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icaKrg.' >jiM iii HJWHL. tHr^ uuiniu ii ii i 'inHm i i i M w i 









Mrs. Harold Bruce 

cnarcti 1, j<ronii»i>i6cc 

Charge of Cromwell's Horsemen. 





His Childhood and Youth 





The Expedition into Spain . 

. 25 

f^^\^ ' 

Accession to the Throne 

. 45 


. 65 

The King and his Prerogative . 

. 89 

Archbishop Laud .... 

. Ill 

The Earl of Strafford . 

. 132 

Downfall of Strafford and Laud 

. 151 

Civil War 

. 171 

The Captivity 


Trial and Death .... 

. 215 



Charles I. vi 

Charles I. passing through the streets of Loadon, 


Charge of Cromwell's Horsemen, 


Charles I. Passing through London 

page vi 




King Charles I. of England . 



Headpiece, Chapter I. . 



Coronation of King James I. of England, facing ' 


Rejoicings at Windsor Castle 

a i 


Windsor Castle .... 

, ' 


Headpiece, Chapter II. 

. ' 


Explaining the Plan to King James, 

facing ' 

' 30 

Prince Charles Surprising the Infanta, 

i( i 


Headpiece, Chapter III. 

, . ' 


The Palace of the Escurial . 

facing ' 


Landing of Henrietta Maria at Dover 

a i 


Headpiece, Chapter IV. 

, , ' 


Assassination of Buckingham 

facing ' 


Buckingham Execrated by the Populace, . ' 


Headpiece, Chapter V. 

, ' 


Charles I. Leaving Parliament 

, . ' 


Headpiece, Chapter VI. 

, . ' 


Dr. Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury, 

facing ' 


Charles I. and his Council 

. ' 


Headpiece, Chapter VII. 

. < 


Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Strafford, 

facing * 


Headpiece, Chapter VIII. . 




TheEarl of Strafford Going to his Trial 

facing page 156 

The Tower of London 

. " 165 

The Earl of Strafford Led to Execution, facing " 168 

Taking the Oath 

. " 170 

Headpiece, Chapter IX. 

" 171 

King Charles I. and the Commons, 

facing "176 

A Battle of the Civil War . 

. " " 186 

An Incident in the Civil War 

facing " 192 

Headpiece, Chapter X. 

. " 195 

Oliver Cromwell .... 

facing " 202 

Arrest of King Charles I. 

u u 204 

Headpiece, Chapter XL 

. " 215 

Painting the Children of Charles I., 

facing " 228 

Execution of King Charles I. 

" " 232 

Funeral of Charles I. . 

. " 235 


Charles the First, of England, ascended 
the throne with very high ideas of the heredi- 
tary rights of his family, and the chief point 
of interest in the history of his reign is the 
contest in which he engaged with the English 
people to maintain them. For twenty-four 
years the struggle was maintained, and then 
came the day when the king stepped through 
a window of his banqueting hall in Whitehall 
Palace to a scaffold especially erected outside. 
When the head of the " Tyrant, traitor and 
murderer, Charles Stuart" was held up to 
general view amid a death-like stillness, men 
said kingship had been killed, and the people 
were to rule. 

But the great landlord power had to be grap- 
pled with, and that proved so strong that to 
establish a dictatorship under the Common- 
wealth's great general, Oliver Cromwell, seemed 
the only way to cope with it. A dictatorship 
could not endure, however, and with Cromwell's 
death it fell, and the old conditions of privilege 
were again set up. 


King Charles.!, of England. 




,KiNG Charles the First was born in Scot- 
land. It may perhaps surprise the reader that 
an English king should be born in Scotland. 
The explanation is this : 

They who have read the history of Mary 
Queen of Scots, will remember that it was the 
great end and aim of her life to unite the 
crowns of England and Scotland in her own 
family. Queen Elizabeth was then Queen of 
England. She lived and died unmarried.^ 
Queen Mary and a young man named Lord 
Darnley were the next heirs^. It was uncertain 
which of the two had the strongest claim. 'To 
prevent a dispute, by uniting these claims, 
Mary made Darnley her husband. They had 
a son, who, after the death of his father and 
mother, was acknowledged to be the heir to 
the English throne, whenever Elizabeth's life 



should end. In the mean time he remained 
King of Scotland. His name was James. He 
married a princess of Denmark ; and his child, 
who afterward was King Charles the First of 
England, was born before he left his native 

King Charles's mother was, as has been al- 
ready said, a princess of Denmark. Her name 
was Anne. The circumstances of her mar- 
riage to King James were quite extraordinary, 
and attracted great attention at the time. It 
is, in some sense, a matter of principle among 
kings and queens, that they must only marry 
persons of royal rank, like themselves ; and as 
they have very little opportunity of visiting 
each other, residing as they do in such distant 
capitals, they generally choose their consorts by 
the reports which come to them of the person 
and character of the different candidates. The 
choice, too, is very much influenced by politi- 
cal considerations, and is always more or less 
embarrassed by the interference of other 
courts, whose ministers make objections to 
this or that alliance, on account of its supposed 
interference with some of their own political 

As it is very inconvenient, moreover, for a 
king to leave his dominions, the marriage cer- 
emony is usually performed at the court where 
the bride resides, without the presence of the 

VharlM J. /act p. 8 

Coronation of King James I. 


bridegroom, he sending an ambassador to act 
as his representative. This is called being 
married by proxy. The brjde then comes to 
her royal husband's dominions, accompanied 
by a great escort. He meets her usually on 
the frontiers ; and there she sees him for the 
first time, after having been married to him 
some weeks by proxy. It is true, indeed, that 
she has generally seen his picture, that being 
usually sent to her before the marriage con- 
tract is made. This, however, is not a matter 
of much consequence, as the personal predilec- 
tions of a princess have generally very little to 
do with the question of her marriage. 

Xow King James had concluded to propose 
for the oldest daughter of the King of Den- 
mark, and he entered into negotiations for this 
purpose. This plan, however, did not please 
the government of England, and Elizabeth, 
who was then the English queen, managed so 
to embarrass and interfere with the scheme, 
that the King of Denmark gave his daughter 
to another claimant. James was a man of very 
mild and quiet temperament, easily counter- 
acted and thwarted in his plans ; but this dis- 
appointment aroused his energies, and he sent 
a splendid embassy into Denmark to demand 
the king's second daughter, whose name was 
Anne. He prosecuted this suit so vigorously 
that the marriage articles were soon agreed to 


and signed. Anne embarked and set sail for 
Scotland. The king remained there, waiting 
for her arrival with great impatience. At 
length, instead of his bride, the news came that 
the fleet in which Anne had sailed had been 
dispersed and driven back by a storm, and 
that Anne herself had landed on the coast of 

James immediately conceived the design of 
going himself in pursuit of her. But knowing 
very well that all his ministers and the officers 
of his government would make endless objec- 
tions to his going out of the country on such 
an errand, he kept his plan a profound secret 
from them all. He ordered some shi]3S to be 
got ready privately, and provided a suitable 
train of attendants, and then embarked with- 
out letting his people know where he was going. 
He sailed across the German Ocean to the 
town in Norway where his bride had landed. 
He found her there, and they were married. 
Her brother, who had just succeeded to the 
throne, having received intelligence of this, in- 
vited the young couple to come and spend the 
winter at his capital of Copenhagen ; and as 
the season was far advanced, and the sea 
stormy. King James concluded to accept the 
invitation. They were received in Copenha- 
gen with great pomp and parade, and the 
winter was spent in festivities and rejoicings^ 


fn the spring he brought his bride to Scotland. 
The whole world were astonished at the per- 
formance of such an exploit by a king, espe- 
cially one of so mild, quiet, and grave a char- 
acter as that which James had the credit of 

Young Charles was very weak and feeble in 
his infancy. It was feared that he would not 
live many hours. The rite of baptism was im- 
mediately performed, as it was, in those days, 
considered essential to the salvation of a child 
dying in infancy that it should be baptized be- 
fore it died. Notwithstanding the fears that 
were at first felt, Charles lingered along for 
some days, and gradually began to acquire a 
little strength. His feebleness was a cause of 
great anxiety and concern to those around him ; 
but the degree of interest felt in the little suf- 
ferer's fate was very much less than it would 
have been if he had been the oldest son. He 
had a brother. Prince Henry, who was older 
than he, and, consequently, heir to his father's 
crown. It was not probable, therefore, that 
Charles would ever be king ; and the import- 
ance of everything connected with his birth 
and his welfare was very much diminished on 
that account. 

It was only about two years after Charles's 
birth that Queen Elizabeth died, and King 
James succeeded to the English throne. A 


messenger came with all speed to Scotland tc 
announce the fact. He rode night and day. 
He arrived at the King's palace in the night. 
He gained admission to the king's chamber, 
and, kneeling at his bedside, proclaimed him 
King of England. James immediately pre- 
pared to bid his Scotch subjects farewell, and 
to proceed to England to take possession of his 
new realm. Queen Anne was to follow him 
in a week or two, and the other children, 
Henry and Elizabeth ; but Charles was too 
feeble to go. 

In those early days there was a prevailing be- 
lief in Scotland, and, in fact, the opinion still 
lingers there, that certain persons among the 
old Highlanders had what they called the gift 
of the second sight — that is, the power of fore- 
seeing futurity in some mysterious and incom- 
prehensible way. An incident is related in the 
old histories connected with Charles's infancy, 
which is a good illustration of this. While 
King James was preparing to leave Scotland, 
to take possession of the English throne, an old 
Highland laird came to bid him farewell. He 
gave the King many parting counsels and good 
wishes, and then, overlooking the older brother. 
Prince Henry, he went directly to Charles, who 
was then about two years old, and bowed be- 
fore him, and kissed his hand with the greatest 
appearance of regard and veneration. King 


James undertook to correct his supposed mis- 
take, by telling him that that was his second 
son, and that the other boy was the heir to the 
crown. ";N"o," said the old laird, ^*I am not 
mistaken. I know to whom I am speaking. 
This child, now in his nurse's arms, will be 
greater than his brother. This is the one who 
is to convey his father's name and titles to suc- 
ceeding generations." This prediction was 
fulfilled ; for the robust and healthy Henry 
died, and the feeble and sickly-looking Charles 
lived and grew, and succeeded, in due time, to 
his father's throne. 

Now inasmuch as, at the time when this pre- 
diction was uttered, there seemed to be little 
human probability of its fulfilment, it at- 
tracted attention ; its unexpected and startling 
character made every one notice and remem- 
ber it ; and the old laird was at once an object 
of interest and wonder. It is probable that 
this desire to excite the admiration of the au- 
ditors, mingled insensibly with a sort of poetic 
enthusiasm, which a rude age and mountainous 
scenery always inspires, was the origin of a 
great many such predictions as these j and 
then, in the end those only which turned out to 
be true were remembered, while the rest were 
forgotten ; and this was the way that the reality 
of such prophetic powers came to be generally 
believed in. 


Feeble and uncertain of life as the infant 
Charles appeared to be, they conferred upon 
him, as is customary in the case of young 
princes, various titles of nobility. He was made 
a duke, a marquis, an earl, and a baron, before 
he had strength enough to lift up his head in 
his nurse's arms. His title as duke was Duke 
of Albany ; and as this was the highest of his 
nominal honors, he was generally known under 
that designation while he remained in Scotland. 

When his father left him, in order to go to 
England and take possession of his new throne, 
he appointed a governess to take charge of the 
health and education of the young duke. This 
governess was Lady Gary. The reason why 
she was appointed was, not because of her pos- 
sessing any peculiar qualifications for such a 
charge, but because her husband. Sir Eobert 
Gary, had been the messenger employed by the 
British Government to communicate to James 
the death of Elizabeth, and to announce to him 
his accession to the throne. The bearer of 
good news to a monarch must always be re- 
warded, and James recompensed Sir Robert for 
his service by appointing his wife to the post of 
governess of his infant son. The office un- 
doubtedly had its honors and emoluments, 
with very little of responsibility or care. 

One of the chief residences of the English 
monarchs is Windsor Castle. It is situated 


above London, on the Thames, on the southern 
shore. It is on an eminence overlooking the 
river and the delightful valley through which 
the river here meanders. In the rear is a very 
extensive park or forest, which is penetrated in 
every direction by rides and walks almost innu- 
merable. It has been for a long time the chief 
country residence of the British kings. It is 
very spacious, containing within its walls many 
courts and quadrangles, with various buildings 
surrounding them, some ancient and some 
modern. Here King James held his court 
after his arrival in England, and in about a 
year he sent for the little Charles to join him. 
The child traveled very slowly, and by very 
easy stages, his nurses and attendants watch- 
ing over him with great solicitude all the way. 
The journey was made in the month of October. 
His mother watched his arrival with great 
interest. Being so feeble and helpless, he was, 
of course, her favorite child. By an instinct 
which very strongly evinces the wisdom and 
goodness which implanted it, a mother always 
bestows a double portion of her love upon the 
frail, the helpless, and the suffering. Instead 
of being wearied out with protracted and in- 
cessant calls for watchfulness and care, she 
feels only a deeper sympathy and love, in pro- 
portion to the infirmities which call for them, 
and thus finds her highest happiness in what 

2— cjj*r:e« I. 


we might expect would be a weariness and a 

Little Charles was four years old when he 
reached Windsor Castle. They celebrated his 
arrival with great rejoicings, and a day or two 
afterwards they invested him with the title of 
Duke of York, a still higher distinction than he 
had before attained. Soon after this, when he 
was perhaps five or six years of age, a gentle- 
man was appointed to take the charge of his 
education. His health gradually improved, 
though he still continued helpless and feeble. 
It was a long time before he could walk, on ac- 
count of some malformation of his limbs. He 
learned to talk, too, very late and very slowly. 
Besides the general feebleness of his constitu- 
tion, which kept him back in all these things, 
there was an impediment in his speech, which 
affected him very much in childhood, and 
which, in fact, never entirely disappeared. 

As soon, however, as he commenced his 
studies under his new tutor, he made much 
greater progress than had been expected. It 
was soon observed that the feebleness which 
had attached to him pertained more to the 
body than to the mind. He advanced with 
considerable rapidity in his learning. His 
progress was, in fact, in some degree, promoted 
by his bodily infirmities, which kept him from 
playing with the other boys of the court, and 


led him to like to be still, and to retire from 
scenes of sport and pleasure which he could 
not share. 

The same cause operated to make him not 
agreeable as a companion, and he was not a 
favorite among those around him. They 
called him Bab\j Charley. His temper seemed 
to be in some sense soured by -the feeling of 
his inferiority, and by the jealousy he would 
naturally experience in finding himself, the 
son of a king, so outstripped in athletic sports 
by those whom he regarded as his inferiors in 
rank and station. 

The lapse of a few years, however, after this 
time, made a total change in Charles's position 
and prospects. His health improved, and his 
constitution began to be confirmed and estab- 
lished. When he was about twelve years of 
age, too, his brother Henry died. This cir- 
cumstance made an entire change in all his 
prospects of life. The eyes of the whole king- 
dom, and, in fact, of all Europe, were now 
upon him as the future sovereign of England. 
His sister Elizabeth, who was a few years older 
than himself, was, about this time, married to 
a German prince, with great pomp and cere- 
mony, young Charles acting the part of bride- 
man. In consequence of his new position as 
heir-apparent to the throne, he was advanced 
to new honors, and had new titles conferred 


upon him, until at last, when he was sixteen 
years of age, he was made Prince of Wales, and 
certain revenues were appropriated to support 
a court for him, that he might be surrounded 
with external circumstances and insignia of 
rank and power, corresponding with his pros- 
pective greatness. 

In the mean time his health and strength 
rapidly improved, and with the improvement 
came a taste for manly and athletic sports, and 
the attainment of excellence in them. He 
became very famous for his skill in all the 
exploits and performances of the young men 
of those days, such as shooting, riding, vault- 
ing, and tilting at tournaments. From being 
a weak, sickly, and almost helpless child, he 
became, at twenty, an active, athletic young 
man, full of life and spirit, and ready for any 
romantic enterprise. In fact, when he was 
twenty-three years old, he embarked in a 
romantic enterprise which attracted the atten- 
tion of all the world. This enterprise will 
presently be described. 

There was at this time, in the court of King 
James, a man who became very famous after- 
ward as a favorite and follower of Charles. He 
is known in history under the name of the 
Duke of Buckingham. His name was origin- 
ally George Villiers. He was a very handsome 
young man, and he seems to have attracted 


King James's attention at first on this account. 
James found him a convenient attendant, and 
made him, at last, his principal favorite. He 
raised him to a high rank, and conferred upon 
him, among other titles, that of Duke of 
Buckingham. The other persons about the 
court were very envious and jealous of his 
influence and power ; but they were obliged to 
submit to it. He lived in great state and 
splendor, and for many years was looked up to 
by the whole kingdom as one of the greatest 
personages in the realm. We shall learn here- 
after how he came to his end. 

If the reader imagines, from the accounts 
which have been given thus far in this chapter 
of the pomp and parade of royalty, of the cas- 
tles and the ceremonies, the titles of nobility, 
and the various insignia of rank and power, 
which we have alluded to so often, that the 
mode of life which royalty led in those days 
was lofty, dignified, and truly great, he will be 
very greatly deceived. All these things were 
merely for show — things put on for public dis- 
play, to gratify pride and impress the people, 
who never looked behind the scenes, with high 
ideas of the grandeur of those who, as they 
were taught, ruled over them by a divine right. 
It would be hard to find, in any class of society 
except those reputed infamous, more low, gross, 
and vulgar modes of life than have been ex- 


hibited generally in the royal palaces of Europe 
for the last five hundred years. King James 
the First has, among English sovereigns, rather 
a high character for sobriety and gravity of 
deportment, and purity of morals ; but the 
glimpses we get of the real, everyday routine 
of his domestic life, are such as to show that 
the pomp and parade of royalty is mere glitter- 
ing tinsel, after all. 

The historians of the day tell such stories as 
these. The king was at one time very dejected 
and melancholy, when Buckingham contrived 
this plan to amuse him. In the first place, 
however, we ought to say, in order to illustrate 
the terms on which he and Buckingham lived 
together, that the king always called Buck- 
ingham Steeny, which was a contraction of 
Stephen. St. Stephen was always represented, 
in the Catholic pictures of the Saints, as a very 
handsome man, and Buckingham being hand- 
some too, James called him Steeny by way of 
compliment. Steeny called the king his dad, 
and used to sign himself, in his letters, ''your 
slave and dog Steeny." There are extant some 
letters which passed between the king and his 
favorite, written, on the part of the king, in 
a style of grossness and indecency such that 
the chroniclers of those days said that they 
were not fit to be printed. They would not 
''blot their pages" with them, they said. 


King Charles's letters were more properly ex- 

To return, then, to our story. The king 
was . very much dejected and melancholy. 
•Steeny, in order to divert him, had a pig 
dressed up in the clothes of an infant child. 
Buckingham's mother, who was a countess, 
personated the nurse, dressed also carefully 
for the occasion. Another person put on a 
bishop's robes, satin gown, lawn sleeves, and 
the other pontifical ornaments. They also 
provided a baptismal font, a prayer-book, and 
other things necessary for a religious cere- 
mony, and then invited the king to come in to 
attend a baptism. The king came, and the 
pretended bishop began to read the service, 
the assistants looking gravely on, until the 
squealing of the pig brought all gravity to an 
end. The king was not pleased ; but the his- 
torian thinks the reason was, not any objection 
which he had to such a profanation, but to his 
not happening to be in a mood for it at that 

There was a negotiation going on for a long 
time for a marriage between one of the king's 
sons, first Henry, and afterward Charles, and 
a princess of Spain. At one time the king lost 
some of the papers, and was storming about 
the palace in a great rage because he could not 
find them. At last he chanced to meet a cer- 


tain Scotchman, a servant of his, named Gib, 
and, like a vexed and impatient child, who lays 
the charge of a lost plaything upon anybody 
who happens to be at hand to receive it, he 
put the responsibility of the loss of the papers 
upon Gib. ^^ I remember," said he, '*I gave 
them to you to take care of. What have you 
done with them ? " The faithful servant fell 
upon his knees, and protested that he had not 
received them. The king was only made the 
more angry by this contradiction, and kicked 
the Scotchman as he kneeled upon the floor. 
The man rose and left the apartment, sayings 
*^I have always been faithful to your majesty, 
and have not deserved such treatment as this. 
I cannot remain in your service under such a 
degradation. I shall never see you again." 
He left the palace, and went away. 

A short time after this, the person to whose 
custody the king had really committed the 
papers came in, and, on learning that they 
were wanted, produced them. The king was 
ashamed of his conduct. He sent for his 
Scotch servant again, and was not easy until 
he was found and brought into his presence. 
He then kneeled before him and asked his for- 
giveness, and said he should not rise till he 
had forgiven him. Gib was disposed to evade 
the request, and urged the king to rise ; but 
James would not do so until he had said he for- 


gave him, in so many words. The whole case 
shows how little of di^^nity and noble bearing 
there really was in the manners and conduct of 
the king in his daily life, though we are almost 
ready to overlook the ridiculous childishness 
and folly of liis fault, on account of the truly 
noble frankness and honesty with which he 
acknowledged it. 

Thus, though everything in which royalty 
appeared before the public was conducted with 
great pomp and parade, this external magnifi- 
cence was then, and always has been, an out- 
side show, witliout anything corresponding to 
it within. The great mass of the people of 
England saw only the outside. They gazed 
with admiration at the spectacle of magnifi- 
cence and splendor which royalty always pre- 
sented to their eyes, whenever they beheld it 
from tlie distant and humble points of view 
which their position afforded them. Prince 
Charles, on the other hand, was behind the cur- 
tain. His childhood and youth were exposed 
fully to all the real influences of these scenes. 
The people of England submitted to be gov- 
erned by such men, not because they thought 
them qualified to govern, or that the circum- 
stances under which their characters were 
formed were such as were calculated to form, 
in a proper manner, the minds of the rulers of 
a Christian people. They did not know what 



those circumstances were. In their concep- 
tions they had grand ideas of royal character 
and life, and imagined the splendid palaces 
which some saw, but more only heard of, at 
Westminster, were filled with true greatness 
and glory. They were really filled with vul- 
garity, vice, and shame. James was to them 

Windsor Castle. 
King James the First, monarch of Great Brit- 
ain, France, and Ireland, and Charles was 
Charles, Prince of Wales, Duke of York, and 
heir-apparent to the throne. Whereas, within 
the palace, to all who saw them and knew them 
there, and really, so far as their true moral posi- 
tion was concerned, the father was ^' Old 
Dad," and the son, what his father always 
called him till he was twenty-four years old, 
"Baby Charley/' 



In order that the reader may understand 
fully the nature of the romantic enterprise in 
which, as we have already said, Prince Charles 
embarked when he was a little over twenty 
years of age, we must premise that Frederic, 
the German prince who married Charles's sis- 
ter Elizabeth some years before, was the ruler 
of a country in Germany called the Palatinate, 
It was on the banks of the Rhine. Frederic's 
title, as a ruler of this country, was Elector 
Palatine. There are a great many indepen- 
dent states in Germany, whose sovereigns have 
various titles, and are possessed of various pre- 
rogatives and powers. 

^^ow it happened that, at this time, very 
fierce civil wars were raging between the Cath- 
olics and the Protestants in Germany. Fred- 
eric got drawn into these wars on the Pretest- 
ant side. His motive was not any desire to 
promote the progress of what he considered the 
true faith, but only a wish to extend his own 



dominions, and add to his own power ; for he 
had been promised a kingdom, in addition to 
his Palatinate, if he would assist the people of 
the kingdom to gain the victory over their 
Catholic foes. He embarked in this enterprise 
without consulting with James, his father-in- 
law, knowing that he would probably disapprove 
of such dangerous ambition. James was, in 
fact, very sorry afterward to hear of Frederic's 
having engaged in such a contest. 

The result was quite as disastrous as James 
feared. Frederic not only failed of getting his 
new kingdom, but he provoked the rage of the 
Catholic powers against whom he had under- 
taken to contend, and they poured a great army 
into his own original territory, and made an 
easy conquest of it. Frederic fled to Holland, 
and remained there a fugitive and an exile, 
hoping to obtain help in some way from 
James, in his efforts to recover his lost 

The people of England felt a great interest 
in Frederic's unhappy fate, and were very de- 
sirous that James should raise an army and 
give him some efficient assistance. One reason 
for this was that they were Protestants, and 
they were always ready to embark, on the 
Protestant side, in the Continental quarrels. 
Another reason was their interest in Elizabeth, 
the wife of Frederic, who had so recently left 


England a blooming bride, and whom they 
still considered as in some sense pertaining to 
the royal family of England, and as having a 
right to look to all her father's subjects for 

But King James himself had no inclination 
to go to war in such a quarrel. He was inac- 
tive in mind and childish, and he had little 
taste for warlike enterprises. He undertook, 
however, to accomplish the object in another 
way. The King of Spain, being one of the 
most powerful of the Catholic sovereigns, had 
great influence in all their councils. He had 
also a beautiful daughter. Donna Maria, called, 
as Spanish princesses are styled, the Infanta. 
Now James conceived the design of proposing 
that his son Charles should marry Donna 
Maria, and that, in the treaty of marriage, 
there should be a stipulation providing that the 
Palatinate should be restored to Frederic. 

These negotiations were commenced, and 
they went on two or three years without mak- 
ing any sensible progress. Donna Maria was 
a Catholic, and Charles a Protestant. Now a 
Catholic could not marry a Protestant without 
a special dispensation from the Pope. To get 
this dispensation required new negotiations and 
delays. In the midst of it all, the King of Spain, 
Donna Maria's father, died, and his son, her 
brother, named Philip, succeeded him. Then 


the negotiations had all to be commenced anew. 
It was supposed that the King of Spain did not 
wish to have the affair concluded, but liked to 
have it in discussion, as it tended to keep the 
King of England more or less under his con- 
trol. So they kept sending ambassadors back 
and forth, with drafts of treaties, articles, con- 
ditions, and stipulations without number. 
There were endless discussions about securing 
to Donna Maria the full enjoyment of the 
Catholic religion in England, and express 
agreements were proposed and debated in re- 
spect to her having a chapel, and priests, and 
the right to celebrate mass, and to enjoy, in 
fact, all the other privileges which she had 
been accustomed to exercise in her own native 
land. James did not object. He agreed to 
everything ; but still, somehow or other, the 
arrangement could not be closed. There was 
always some pretext for delay. 

At last Buckingham proposed to Charles 
that they two should set off for Spain in per- 
son, and see if they could not settle the affair. 
Buckingham's motive was partly a sort of 
reckless daring, which made him love any 
sort of adventure, and partly a desire to cir- 
cumvent and thwart a rival of his, the Earl of 
Bristol, who had charge of the negotiations. 
It may seem to the reader that a simple jour- 
ney from London to Madrid, of a young man, 


for tlip purpose of visiting a lady whom he was 
wishing to espouse, was no such extraordi- 
nary undertaking as to attract the attention 
of the spirited young man to it from love of 
adventure. The truth is, however, that, with 
tlie ideas that then prevailed in respect to 
royal etiquette, there was something very un- 
usual in this plan. The prince and Bucking- 
ham knew very well that the consent of the 
statesmen and high officers of the realm could 
never be obtained, and that their only alter- 
native was, accordingly, to go off secretly and 
in disguise. 

It seemed, however, to be rather necessary 
to get the king's consent. But Buckingham 
did not anticipate much difficulty in this, as 
he was accustomed to manage James almost 
like a child. He had not, however, been on 
very good terms with Charles, having been ac- 
customed to treat him in the haughty and 
imperious manner which James would usually 
yield to, but which Charles was more inclined 
to resist and resent. When Buckingham, at 
length, conceived of this scheme of going into 
Spain, he changed his deportment toward 
Charles, and endeavored, by artful dissimula- 
tion, to gain his kind regard. He soon suc- 
ceed, and then he proposed his plan. 

Ho roprosented to Charles that the sole 
cair-^ of the delays in settling the question of 

3-rharl«H r. . 


his marriage was because it was left so entirely 
in the hands of ambassadors, negotiators, and 
statesmen, who involved everything in endless 
mazes. '^ Take the affair into your own 
hands," said he, *^ like a man. Set off with 
me, and go at once into Spain. Astonish 
them with your sudden and unexpected pres- 
ence. The Infanta will be delighted at such 
a proof of your ardor, courage, and devotion, 
and will do all in her power to co-operate with 
you in bringing the affair at once to a close. 
Besides, the whole world will admire the orig- 
inality and boldness of the achievement." 

Charles was easily persuaded. - The next 
thing was to get the king's consent. Charles 
and Buckingham went to his palace one day, 
and, watching their opportunity when he was 
pretty merry with wine, Charles told him he 
had a favor to ask, and wanted his father to 
promise to grant it before he knew what it was. 
James, after some hesitation, half in jest and 
half in earnest, agreed to it. They made him 
promise that he would not tell any one what 
it was, and then explained their plan. The 
king was thunderstruck ; his amazement so- 
bered him at once. He retracted his promise. 
He never could consent to any such scheme. 

Buckingham liere interposed with his aid. 
He told the kiui^ it was perfectly safe for tlie 
prince to go, and that tliis measure was the 

Cliuilen J.jacei>. ■>■/ 

Charles and Buckingham Explaining the Plan. 


only plan which could bring the marriage 
treaty to a close. Besides, he said, if he and 
the prince were there, they could act far more 
effectually than any ambassadors in securing 
the restoration of the Palatinate to Frederic. 
James could not withstand these entreaties and 
arguments, and he finally gave a reluctant con- 
sent to the plan. 

He repented, however^ as soon as the con- 
sent was given, and when Charles and Buck- 
ingham came next to see him, he said it must 
be given up. One great source of his anxiety 
was a fear that his son might be taken and 
kept a prisoner, either in France or Spain, and 
detained a long time in captivity. Such a cap- 
tive was always, in those days, a very tempt- 
ing prize to a rival power. Personages of very 
high rank may be detained as captives, while 
all the time those who detain them may pre- 
tend not to confine them at all, the guards and 
sentinels being only marks of regal state, and 
indications of the desire of the power into 
whose hands they have fallen to treat them in 
a manner comporting with their rank. Then 
there were always, in those days, questions and 
disputes pending between the rival courts of 
England, France, and Spain, out of which it 
was easy to get a pretext for detaining any 
strolling prince who might cross the frontier, 
as security for the fulfilment of some stipula- 


tion, or for doing some act of justice claimed. 
James, knowing well how much faith and 
honor were to be expected of kings and courts, 
was afraid to trust his son in French or Span- 
ish dominions. He said he certainly could not 
consent to his going, without first sending to 
France, at least, for a safe-conduct — that is, 
a paper from the government, pledging the 
honor of tlu king not to molest or interrupt 
him in his journey through his dominions. 

Buckingham, instead of attempting to reas- 
sure the king by fresh arguments and persua- 
sions, broke out into a passion, accused him of 
violating his promise not to reveal their plan 
to any one, as he knew, he said, that this new 
opposition had been put into his head by some 
of his counselors to whom he had made known 
the design. The king denied this, and was 
terrified, agitated, and distressed by Bucking- 
fiam's violence. He wept like a child. His 
opposition at length gave way a second time, 
and he said they might go. They named two 
attendants whom they wanted to go with 
them. One was an officer of the king's liouse- 
hold, named Collington, who was then in the 
anteroom. They asked the king to call him 
in to see if he would go. When Collington 
came in, the king accosted him with, *^ Here's 
Steeny and Baby Charley that want to go to 
Spain and fetch the Infanta. What think you 


of it ? " Collington did not think well of it at 
all. There followed a new relapse on the part 
of the king from his consent, a new storm of 
anger from Buckingliam, more sullen obsti- 
nacy on tlie part of Charles, with profane 
criminations and recriminations one against 
another. The whole scene was what, if it had 
occurred anywliere else tlian in a palace, 
would have beenj3alled a brawl. 

It ended, as brawls usually do, in the tri- 
umph of the most unreasonable and violent. 
James threw himself upon a bed wiiich was in 
the room, weeping bitterly, and saying that 
they would go, and he should lose his Baby 
Charley. Considering that Charles was now 
the monarch's only child remaining at home, 
and that, as heir to the crown, his life was of 
great consequence to the realm, it is not sur- 
prising that his father was distressed at the 
idea of his exposing himself to danger on such 
an expedition ; but one not accustomed to what 
is behind the scenes in royal life would expect 
a little more dignity and propriety in the mode 
of expressing paternal solicitude from a king. 

Charles and Buckingham set off secretly 
from London ; their two attendants were to 
join them in different places — the last at Do- 
ver, where tliey were to embark. They laid 
aside all marks of distinction in dress, such as 
persons Qt high ^ '' used tQ wear in those 


days, and took the garb of the common people. 
They put on wigs, also, the hair being very 
long, so as to shade the face and alter the ex- 
pression of their countenances. These exter- 
nal disguises, however, were all that they could 
command. They could not assume the modest 
and quiet air and manner of persons in the or- 
dinary walks of life, but made such displays, 
and were so liberal in the use of their money, 
and carried such an air and manner in all that 
they did and said, that all who had any inter- 
course with them perceived that they were in 
disguise. They were supposed to be wild 
blades, out on some frolic or other, but still 
they were allowed to pass along without any 

They were, however, stopped at Dover, 
where .in some way they attracted the atten- 
tion of the mayor of the town. Dover is on 
the Channel, opposite to Calais, at the narrow- 
est point. It was, of course, especially in those 
days, the point where the principal intercourse 
between the two nations centered. The mag- 
istrates of the two towns were obliged, conse- 
quently, to be on the alert, to prevent the es- 
cape of fugitives and criminals, as well as to 
guard against the efforts of smugglers, or the 
entrance of spies or other secret enemies. The 
Mayor of Dover arrested our heroes. They 
told him that their names were Toni Smith 


and Jack Smith ; these, in fact, were the names 
with wliich they had traveled through England 
thus far. They said that they were traveling 
for amusement. The mayor did not believe 
tliem. He thought they were going across to 
the French coast to fight a duel. This was 
often done in those days. They then told him 
that they were indeed persons of rank in dis- 
guise, and that they were going to inspect the 
English fleet. He finally allowed them to em- 

On landing at Calais, they traveled post to 
Paris, strictly preserving their incognito, but 
assuming such an air and bearing as to create 
the impression that they were not what they 
pretended. When they reached Paris, Buck- 
ingham could not resist the temptation of 
showing Charles a little of life, and he con- 
trived to get admitted to a party at court, 
where Charles saw, among other ladies who 
attracted his attention, the Princess Henrietta. 
He was much struck with her beauty and 
arace, but he little thought that it was this 
princess, and not the Infanta whom he was 
going in pursuit of, who was really to become 
his wife, and the future Queen of Eng- 

The young travelers thought it not prudent 
to remain long in Paris, and they accordingly 
left that city, and pressed forward as rapidly 


as possible toward the Spanish frontier. They 
managed, however, to conduct always in such 
a way as to attract attention. Although they 
were probably sincerely desirous of not having 
their true rank and character known, still they 
could not resist the temptation to assume such 
an air and bearing as to make people wonder 
who they were, and thus increase the spirit and 
adventure of their journey. At Bordeaux 
they received invitations from some grandees 
to be present at some great gala, but they de- 
clined, saying that they were only poor gentle- 
men traveling to inform their minds, and were 
not fit to appear in such gay assemblies. 

At last they approached Madrid. They had, 
besides Collington, another attendant who 
spoke the Spanish language, and served them 
as an interpreter. They separated from these 
two the day before they entered Madrid, so as 
to attract the less atttention. Their attend- 
ants were to be left behind for a day, and 
afterward were to follow them into the city. 
The name of the British ambassador at Madrid 
was the Earl of Bristol. He had had charge 
of all the negotiations in respect to the mar- 
riage, and to tlie restoration of the Palatinate, 
and believed that he had brought them almost 
to a successful termination. He lived in a 
palace in Madrid, and, as is customary with 
the ambassadors of great powers at the courts 


of great powers, in a style of the highest pomp 
and splendor. 

Buckingham took the prince directly to 
Bristol's house. Bristol was utterly con- 
founded at seeing them. Nothing could be 
worse, he said, in respect to the completion 
of the treaty, than the prince's presence in 
Madrid. The introduction of so new and ex- 
traordinary an element into the affair would 
undo all that had been done, and lead the 
King of Spain to begin anew, and go over all 
the ground again. In speaking of this ocur- 
rence to another, he said that just as he was 
on the point of coming to a satisfactory con- 
clusion of his long negotiations and toils, a 
demon in the shape of Prince Charles came 
suddenly upon the stage to thwart and defeat 
them all. 

The Spanish court was famous in those days 
— in fact, it has always been famous — for its 
punctilious attention to etiquette and parade ; 
and as soon as the prince's arrival was known 
to the king, he immediately began to make 
preparations to welcome him with all possible 
pomp and ceremony. A great procession was 
made through the Prado, which is a street iu 
Madrid famous for promenades, processions, 
and public displays of all kinds. In moving 
through the city on tliis occasion, the king and 
Prince Charles walked together, the monarch 


thus treating the prince as his equal. There 
was a great canopy of state borne over their 
heads as they moved along. This canopy was 
supported by a large number of persons oi' the 
highest rank. The streets, and the windows 
and balconies of the houses on each side, were 
thronged with spectators, dressed in the gay 
and splendid court dresses of those times. 
When they reached the end of the route, and 
were about to enter the gate of the palace, 
there was a delay to decide which should enter 
first, the king and the prince each insisting on 
giving the precedence to the other. At last it 
was settled by their both going in together. 

If the prince thus, on the one hand, derived 
some benefit in the gratification of his pride 
by the Spanish etiquette and parade, he suf- 
fered some inconvenience and disappointment 
from it, on the other hand, by its excluding 
him from all intercourse or acquaintance with 
the Infanta. It was not proper for the young 
man to see or to speak to the young lady, in such 
a case as this, until the arrangements had 
been more fully matured. The formalities of 
the engagement must have proceeded beyond 
the point which they had yet reached, before 
the bridegroom could be admitted to a per- 
sonal interview with the bride. It is true, he 
could see her in public, where she was in a 
crowd, with other ladies of the court, and. 


where he could have no communication with 
her ; but this was all. They arranged it, how- 
ever, to give Charles as many opportunities of 
this kind as possible. They got up shows in 
which the prince could see the Infanta among 
the spectators ; and they arranged tiltings and 
ridings at the ring, and other athletic sports, 
such a^. Charles excelled in, and let him per- 
form ills exploits in her presence. His rivals 
in these contests did not have the incivility to 
conquer him, and his performances excited ex- 
pressions, at least, of universal admiration. 

But the prince and Buckingham did not 
very willingly submit to the stiffness and for- 
mality of the Spanish court. As soon as they 
came to feel a little at home, they began to act 
with great fi'eedom. At one time the prince 
learned that the Infanta was going, early in the 
morning, to take a walk in some private pleas- 
ure grounds, at a country house in the neigh- 
borhood of Madrid, and he conceived the de- 
sign of gaining an interview with her there by 
stealth. He accordingly repaired to the place, 
got admitted in some way within the precincts 
of the palace, and contrived to clamber over a 
high wall which separated him from the grounds 
in which the Infanta w^s walking, and so let 
himself down into her presence. The accounts 
do not state whetlier she herself was pleased or 
alarmed, but the officer who had her in charge. 


an old nobleman, was very niucli alarmed, and 
begged the prince to retire, as he himself would 
be subject to a very severe punishment if it 
were known that he had allowed such an inter- 
view. Finally they opened the door, and the 
prince went out. Many people were pleased 
with this and similar adventures of the prince 
and of Buckingham, but the leading persons 
about the court were displeased with them. 
Their precise and formal notions of propriety 
were very much shocked by such freedoms. 

Besides, it was soon found that the charac- 
ters of these high-born visitors, especially that 
of Buckingham, were corrupt, and their lives 
very irregular. Buckingham was accustomed 
to treat King James in a very bold, familiar, 
and imperious manner, and he fell insensibly 
into the same habits of intercourse with those 
about him in Spain. The little reserve and 
caution which he manifested at first sooii wore 
otf, and he began to be very generally disliked. 
In the mean time, the negotiation was, as Bris- 
tol had expected, very much put back by the 
prince's arrival. The King of Spain formed 
new plans, and thought of new conditions to 
impose. The Catholics, too, thought that 
Charles's coming thus into a Catholic country, 
indicated some leaning, on his part, toward 
the Catholic faith. The Pope actually wrote 
him a long letter, the object of which was to 

Charleii J./uce p. MJ 

VviuQ^ Ciiarles burprieing the Infanta. 


draw him off from the ranks of Protestantism. 
Charles wrote a civil, but rather an evasive 

In the mean time* King James wrote childish 
letters from time to time to his two dear boys, 
as he called them, and he sent them a great 
many presents of jewelry and splendid dresses, 
some for them to wear themselves, and some 
for the prince to offer as gifts to the Infanta. 
Among these, he describes in one of his letters, a 
little mirror, set in a case which was to be worn 
hung at the girdle. He wrote to Charles that 
when he gave this mirror to the Infanta, he 
must tell her that it was a picture which he 
had had imbued with magical virtue by means 
of incantations and charms, so that whenever 
she looked into it, she would see a portrait 
of the most beautiful princess in England, 
France, or Spain. 

At last the great obstacle in the way of the 
conclusion of the treaty of marriage, which 
consisted in the delays and difficulties in getting 
the Pope's dispensation, was removed. The 
dispensation came. But then the King of 
Spain wanted some new guarantees in respect 
to the privileges of Catholics in England, under 
pretense of securing more perfectly the rights 
of the Infanta and of her attendants when they 
should have arrived in that country. The 
truth was, he probably wanted to avail himself 

4— Cbarlen I. 


of tlie occasion to gain some foothold for the 
Catliolic faith in England, which country had 
become almost entirely Protestant. At length, 
however, all obstacles seemgd to be removed, 
and the treaty was signed. The news of it 
was received with great joy in England, as it 
seemed to secure a permanent alliance between 
the two powerful countries of England and 
Spain. Great celebrations took place in Lon- 
don, to do honor to the occasion. A chapel 
was built for the Infanta, to be ready for her 
on her arrival ; and a fleet was fitted out to 
convey her and her attendants to her new 

In the riean time^ however, although the 
king had signed the treaty, there was a strong 
party formed against the marriage in Spain. 
Buckingham was hated and despised. Charles, 
they saw, was almost entirely under his influ- 
ence. They said they would rather see the 
Infanta in her grave than in the hands of such 
men. Buckingham became irritated by the 
hostility he had awakened, and he determined 
to break off the match entirely. He wrote 
home to James that he had no idea that the 
Spanish court had any intention of carrying 
the arrangement really into effect ; that they 
were procrastinating the affair on every possi- 
ble pretext, and that he was really afraid that, 
if the prince wer^ to attempt to lej^ve the qovlu- 


try, they would interpose and detain him as a 
prisoner. King James was very much ahirmed. 
lie wrote in the greatest trepidation, urging 
*^ the hids " to come away immediately, leaving 
a proxy behind them, if necessary, for the 
solemnization of the marriage. Tliis was what 
Buckingham wanted, and lie and the prince 
began to make preparations for their de- 

The King of Spain, far from interposing any 
obstacles in the way, only treated them with 
greater and higher marks of respect as the 
time of their separation from his court drew 
nigh. lie arranged great and pompous cere- 
monies to honor their departure, lie accom- 
panied them, with all the grandees of the court, 
HA far as to the Escurial, wliicli is a famous 
royal palace not far from Madrid, built and 
furnished in the most sumptuous style of mag- 
nificence and sjilendor. Here they had part- 
ing feasts and celebrations. Here the prince 
took Ids leave of the Infanta, Bristol serving 
as interpreter, to translate his parting speeches 
into Spanish, so that she could understand 
thom. From the Escurial the prince and Buck- 
ingham, witli a great many English noblemen 
who had followed them to Madrid, and a groat 
train of attendants, traveled toward the sea- 
coast, where a fleet of vessels were ready to 
receive them. 


They embarked at a port called St. Andrew. 
They came very near being lost in a storm of 
mist and rain which came upon them while 
going out to the ships, which were at a dis- 
tance from the shore, in small boats provided 
to convey them. Having escaped this danger 
they arrived safely at Portsmouth, the gre^:? 
landing point of the British navy on the south- 
ern shores of England, and thence proceeded 
to London. They sent back orders that 6he 
proxy should not be used, and the match wa' 
finally abandoned, each party accusing thtr 
other of duplicity and bad faith. King James 
was, however, very glad to get his son safe 
back again, and the people made as mary 
bonfires and illuminations to celebrate the 
breaking up of this Catholic match, as they 
had done before to do honor to its supposed 
completion. As all hope of recovering the 
Palatinate by negotiation was now past, the 
king began to prepare for the attempt to re- 
conquer it by force of arms. 




King James made slow progress in his mill 
tary preparations. He could not raise the 
funds without the action of Parliament, and 
the houses were not in very good humor. The 
expenses of the prince's visit to Spain had 
been enormous, and other charges, arising out 
of the pomp and splendor with which the ar- 
rangements of the court were maintained, gave 
tliem a little feeling of discontent. They had 
other grievances of which they were disposed 
to complain, and they began to look upon this 
war, notwithstanding its Protestant character, 
as one in which the king was only striving to 
recover his son-in-law's dominions, and, con- 
sequently, as one which pertained more to his 
personal interests tlian to the public welfare of 
the realm. 

While things were in this state the king fell 
sick. The mother of the Duke of Bucking- 
ham undertook to prescribe for him. It was 

understood that Buckingham himself, who 



had, ill the course of the Spanish enterprise, 
and since his return, acquired an entire ascend- 
ency over Charles, was not unwilling that his 
old master should leave the stage, and the 
younger one reign in his stead ; and that his 
mother shared in this feeling. At any rate, 
her prescriptions made the king much worse. 
He had the sacrament administered to him in 
his sick chamber, and said that lie derived 
great comfort from it. One morning, very 
early, he sent for the prince to come and see 
him. Charles rose, dressed himself, and came. 
His father had something to say to him, and 
tried to speak. He could not. His strength 
was too far gone. He fell back upon his pil- 
low, and died. 

Cliarles was, of course, now king. The 
theory in the English monarchy is, that the 
king never dies. So soon as the person in 
whom the royal sovereignty resides ceases to 
breathe, the principle of supremacy vests im- 
mediately in his successor, by a law of trans- 
mission entirely independent of the will of 
man. The son becomes king by a divine right. 
His being proclaimed and crowned, as he usu- 
ally is, at some convenient time early in his 
reign, are not ceremonies wliich make him 
king. They only acknowledge him to be so. 
He does not, in any sense, derive his powers 
and prerogatives from tliese acts. He only re- 


ceives from liis people, by meuns of them, a 
recognition of his right to the high office to 
which he has already been inducted by the fiat 
of Heaven. 

It will be observed, thus, that the ideas 
which prevailed in respect to the nature and 
province of government, were very different 
in England at that time from those which are 
entertained in America at the present day. 
With us, the administration of government is 
merely a business, transacted for the benefit 
of the people by their agents — men who are 
put in power for this purpose, and who, like 
otiier agents, are responsible to their principals 
for the manner in which they fulfil their trusts. 
But government in England was, in the days 
of the Stuarts — and it is so to a great extent at 
the present day — a right which one family 
possessed, and which entitled that family to 
certain immunities, powers, and prerogatives, 
which they held entirely independent of any 
desire, on the part of the people, that they 
should exercise them, or even their consent i\\ixi 
they should do so. The right to govern the 
realm of Great Britain was a sort of estate 
which descended to Charles from his ancestors, 
and with the possession and enjoyment of 
which the community Iiad no right to inter- 

This seems, at first view, very absurd to us, 


but it is not particularly absurd, Charles's 
lawyers would say to any plain proprietor of a 
piece of land, who might call in question his 
right to govern the country, the king holds his 
crown by precisely the same tenure tliat ycu 
hold your farm. Why should you be the ex- 
clusive possessor of that land, while so many 
poor beggars are starving ? Because it has de- 
scended to you from your ancestors, and noth- 
ing has descended to them. And it is precisely 
so that the right to manage the fleets and 
armies, and to administer the laws of the realm, 
has descended, under tlie name of sovereignty, 
to him, and no such political power has de- 
scended to you. 

True, the farmer would reply ; but in mat- 
ters of government we are to consider what 
will promote the general good. The great ob- 
ject to be attained is the welfare and happiness 
of the community. Now, if this general wel- 
fare comes into competition with tlie supposed 
rights of individuals, arising from such a prin- 
ciple as hereditary succession, the latter ought 
certainly to yield. 

But why, might the lawyer reply, should 
rights founded on hereditary succession yield 
any more readily in the case of governmeiti 
than in the case of property f The distribution 
of property influences the general welfare q n i te 
as much as the management of power. Sup- 


pose it were proved that the general welfare of 
your parish would be promoted by the divisiou 
of your land among the destitute there. You 
have nothing to oppose to such a proposition 
but vour hereditary right. And the king has 
that to oppose to any plan of a division of his 
prerogatives and powers among the people who 
would like to share them. 

Whatever may be thought of this reasoning 
on this side of the Atlantic, and at the present 
day, it was considered very satisfactory in 
England two or three centuries ago. The true 
and proper jurisdiction of an English monarch, 
as it had existed from ancient times, was con- 
sidered as an absolute right, vesting in each 
successive inheritor of the crown, and which 
the community could not justly interfere with 
or disturb for any reasons less imperious than 
such as would authorize an interference with 
the right of succession to private property. 
Indeed, it is probable that, with most men at 
that time, an inherited right to govern was re- 
garded as the most sacred of the two. 

The fact seems to be, that the right of a son 
to come into the place of his father, whether in 
respect to property, power, or social rank, is 
not a natural, inherent, and indefeasible right, 
but a privilege which society accords, as a mat- 
ter of convenience and expediency. In Eng- 
land, expediency is, on the whole, considered 


to require that all three of these things, viz., 
pro^Derty, rank, and power, in certain cases, 
should descend from father to son. In this 
country, on the other hand, we confine the he- 
reditament to property, abrogating it in the 
case of rank and power. In neither case is 
there probably any absolute natural right, but 
a conventional right is allowed to take its place 
in one, or another, or all of these particulars, 
according to the opinion of the community in 
respect to what its true interests and the gen- 
eral welfare, on the whole, require. 

The kings themselves of this Stuart race — 
which race includes Mary Queen of Scots, the 
mother of the line, and James I., Charles I., 
Charles II., and James II. — entertained very 
high ideas of these hereditary rights of theirs 
to govern the realm of England. They felt a 
determination to maintain these rights and 
powers at all hazards. Charles ascended the 
throne with these feelings, and the chief point 
of interest in the history of his reign is the 
contest in which he engaged with the English 
people in his attempts to maintain them. 

The body with which the king came most 
immediately into conflict in this long struggle 
were the two houses of Parliament. And here 
American readers are very liable to fall into a 
mistake by considering the houses of Parlia- 
ineiit as analogous to the houses of legislatioii 


in the various governments of this country. 
In our governments the chief magistrate has 
only to execute definite and written laws and 
ordinances, passed by the Legislature, and 
which the Legislature may pass with or with- 
out his consent ; and when enacted, he must 
be governed by them. Thus the president or 
the governor is, in a certain sense, the agent 
and officer of the legislative power of the state, 
to carry into effect its decisions, and this 
legislative power has really the control. 

By the ancient Constitution of England, 
however, the Parliament was merely a body 
of counselors, as it were, summoned by the 
king to give him their advice, to frame for him 
such laws as he wanted to have framed, and 
to aid him in raising funds by taxing the peo- 
ple. The king might call this council or not, 
as he pleased. There was no necessity for call- 
ing it unless he needed more funds than he 
could raise by his own resources. When called, 
they felt that they had come, in a great meas- 
ure, to aid the king in doing his will. AVhen 
they framed a law, they sent it to him, and if 
he was satisfied with it, he made it law. It was 
the king who really enacted it. If he did not 
approve the law, he wrote upon the parchment 
which contained it, '* The king will think of 
it," and that was the end. The king would 
call upon them to assess a tax and collect the 


money, and would talk to them about his plans, 
and his government, and the aid which he 
wanted from them to enable him to accomplish 
what he had himself undertaken. In fact, 
the king was the government, and the houses 
of Parliament his instruments to aid him in 
giving effect to his decrees. 

The nobles, that is, the heads of the great 
families, and also the bishops, who were the 
heads of the various dioceses of the Church, 
formed one branch of this great council. This 
was called the House of Lords. Certain repre- 
sentatives of the counties and of thf towns 
formed another branch, called the House of 
Commons. These delegates came to the coun- 
cil, not from any right which the counties and 
towns were supposed to possess to a share in 
the government, but simply because they were 
summoned by the king to come and give him 
their aid. They were to serve without pay, as 
a matter of duty which they owed to the sov- 
ereign. Those that came from counties were 
called knights, and those from the towns bur- 
gesses. These last were held in very little es- 
timation. The towns, in those days, were 
considered as mere collections of shopkeepers 
and tradesmen, who were looked down upon 
with much disdain by the haughty nobles. 
\Yhen the king called his Parliament together, 
and went in to address them^ he entered the 


chamber of the House of Peers, and tlie com- 
mons were called in, to stand where they could, 
witli their heads uncovered, to hear what he 
had to say. They were, in a thousand other 
ways, treated as an inferior class ; but still 
their counsels might, in some cases, be of serv- 
ice, and so they were summoned to attend, 
though they were to meet always, and deliber- 
ate, in a separate chamber. 

As the king could call the Parliament to- 
gether at any time and place he pleased, so he 
could suspend or terminatD their sittings at any 
time. He could intermit the action of a Par- 
liament for a time, sending the members to 
their homes until he should summon tht^m 
again. This was called npi'orogafion. Or he 
could dissolve the body entirely at any time, 
and then require new elections for a new Par- 
liament whenever he wanted to avail himself 
of the wisdom or aid of such a body again. 

Thus everything went on the supposition 
that the real responsibility for the government 
was with the king. lie was the monarch, and 
the real sovereignty vested in him. lie called 
his nobles, and a delegation from the mass of 
the people, together, whenever he wanted their 
help, and not otherwise. Tie was responsible, 
not to them nor to the peoi)le at large, but to 
God only, for the r.cts of his administration. 
The duty cf rarlianient was limited to that of 


aiding him in carrying out' his plans of gov- 
ernment, and the people had nothing to do but 
to be obedient, submissive, and loyal. These 
were, at any rate, the ideas of the kings, and 
all the forms of the English Constitution, and 
the ancient phraseology in which the transac- 
tions are expressed, correspond with them. 

AVe cannot give a better proof and illustra- 
tion of what has been said than by transcrib- 
ing the substance of one of King James's mes- 
sages to his Parliament, delivered about the 
close of his life, and, of course, at the period 
of which we are writing. It was as follows : 

** My Lords spiritual and temporal, and you the 
Commons : In my last Parliament I made long dis- 
courses, especially to them of the Lower House. I 
did open the true thought of my heart. But I may 
say with our Saviour, ' I have piped to you and ye 
have not danced ; I have mourned to you and you 
have not lamented ; ' so all my sayings turned to me 
again without any success. And now, to tell the 
reasons of your calling and of this meeting, apply it 
to yourselves, and spend not the time in long 
speeches. Consider that the Parliament is a thing 
composed of a head and a body ; the monarch and 
the two estates. It was, first, a monarchy ; then 
after, a Parliament. There are no Parliaments but 
in monarchical governments ; for in Venice, the 
Netherlands, and other free governments there are 
none. The head is to call the body together ; and 
for the clergy the bishops are chief, for shires their 
knights, for towns and cities their burgesses and 


citizens. These are to treat of difficult matters, and 
counsel their king with their best advice to make 
laws* for the commonweal; and tl)e Lower House 
is also to petition the king and acquaint him with 
their grievances, and not to meddle with the king's 
prerogative. They are to offer supply for his neces- 
sity, and he to distribute, in recompense thereof, 
justice and mercy. As in all Parliaments it is the 
king's office to make good laws, whose fundamenta-1 
cause is tlie people's ill manners, so at this time. 

" For a supply to my necessities, I have reigned- 
eighteen years, in which I liave had peace, and I 
liave received far less supply than hath been given 
to any king since the Conquest. The last queen 
had, one year with another, above a hundred 
thousand pounds })er annum in subsidies; and in all 
my time 1 have had but four subsidies! and six fif- 
teens, f It is ten years since I had a subsidy, in all 
which time I have been sparing to trouble you. I 
have turned myself as nearly to save expenses as I 
may. 1 have abated much in my household ex- 
})enses, in my navies, and the charge of my mu- 

Aftor speaking about tlie affairs of the Pa- 
latinate, and calling upon tlie Parliament to 
furnish him with money to recover it for his 
son-in-law, he adds : 

•* Consider the trade for the making thereof better, 

* Meaning advice to him how he shall make laws 
i is evident from what is said below, 
f Species of taxes granted by Parliament. 


and show me the reason why my mint, these eight 
or nine years, hath not gone. I confess I have been 
liberal in my grants ; but if I be informed, I will 
amend all hurtful grievances. But whoever shall 
hasten after grievances, and desire to make himself 
popular, he hath the spirit of Satan. I was, in my first 
Parliament, a novice ; and in my last, there was a 
kind of beasts, called vndertakers, a dozen of whom 
undertook to govern the last Parliament, and they 
led me. I shall thank you for your good office, and 
desire that the wcvld may say well of our agree- 

This kind of harangue from the king to his 
Parliament seems not to have been considered, 
at tlie time, at all extraordinary ; though, if 
such a message were to be sent at the present 
day, by a President of the United States to 
the houses of Congress, we think it would 
make a sensation. 

Still, notwithstanding what we have said,, 
the Parliament did contrive gradually to at- 
tain to the possession of some privileges and 
powers of its own. The English people liave 
a great deal of independence and spirit, thougli 
Americans traveling there, with ideas carried 
from this country, are generally surprised at 
finding so little instead of so much. Tlie 
knights and burgesses of the House of Com- 
mons, though they submitted patiently to the 
forms of degradation which the lords and 
kings imposed upon tliem, gradually got pos- 


session of certain powers wliich they claimed 
as their own, and wliich they showed a strong 
disposition to defend. They claimed the ex- 
elusive right to lay taxes of every kind. This 
had been the usage so long, that they luid tlie 
same right to it that the king had to his 
crown, They had a riglit, too, to petition tlie 
king for a redress of any grievances wliicl: 
they supposed -tho people were suffering under 
his reign. These, and certain other powers 
and immunities wliich they had possessed, were 
called their 2^rivileffes. Tlie king's rights were, 
on the other hand, called his j)rero(/atioes. 
The Parliament were always endeavoring to 
extend, define, and establish their privileges. 
The king was equally bent on maintaining his 
ancient prerogatives. King Charles's reign 
derives its chief interest from the long and 
insane contest which he waged with his Par- 
liament on this question. The contest com- 
menced at the king's accession to the throne, 
and lasted a quarter of a century : it ended 
with his losing all his prerogatives and his 

This circumstance, that the main interest 
in King Charles's reign is derived from his 
contest with his Parliament, has made it 
necessary to explain somewhat fully, as we 
have done, the nature of that body. We have 
described it as it was in the days of the 


Stuarts ; but, in order not to leave any wrong 
impression on the mind of the reader in re- 
gard to its present condition, we must add, 
that though all its external forms remain the 
same, the powers and functions of the body 
have greatly changed. The despised and con- 
temned knights and burgesses, that were not 
worthy to have seats provided for them when 
the king was delivering them his speech, now 
rule the world ; or, at least, come nearer to the 
possession of that dominion than any other 
power has ever done, in ancient or modern 
times. They decide Avho shall administer the 
government, and in what way. They make 
the laws, settle questions of trade and com- 
merce, decide really on peace and war, and, 
in a word, hold the whole control, while the 
nominal sovereign takes rides in the royal 
parks, or holds drawing-rooms in the palaces, 
in empty and powerless parade. There is no 
question that the British House of Commons 
has exerted a far wider influence on the desti- 
nies of the human race than any other govern- 
mental power that has ever exisited. It has 
gone steadily on for five, and perhaps for ten 
centuries, in the same direction and toward 
the same ends ; and whatever revolutions may 
threaten other elements of European power, the 
British House of Commons, in some form or 
other, is as sure as anything human can be of 


existence and power for five or ten centuries 
to come. ' 

And yet it is one of the most remarkable of 
the strange plienomena of social life, that this 
body, standing at the head, as it really does, 
of all human power, submits patiently still to 
all the marks and tokens of inferiority and 
degradation wliich accompanied its origin. It 
comestogetlier when the sovereign sends writs, 
ordering the several constituencies to choose 
their representatives, and the representatives 
to assemble. It comes humbly into the House 
of Peers to listen to the instructions of the 
sovereign at the opening of the session, the 
members in a standing position, and with heads 
uncovered.* It debates these suggestions 
with forms and in a phraseology which im- 
ply that it is only considering what cotinsel to 
give the king. It enacts nothing — it only 
recommends ; and it holds its existence solely 
at the discretion of the great imaginary power 
which called it into being. These forms may, 
very probably, soon be changed for others 
more true to the facts ; and the principle of 
election may be changed, so as to make the 

*Even in the case of a committee of conference 
between tlie two houses, the lords have seats in the 
committee-room, and wear their hats. The mem- 
bers from the commons must stand, and be uncov- 
ered during the deliberations. 


body represent more fully the general popula- 
tion of the empire ; but the body itself will 
doubtless continue its action for a very long 
period to come. 

According to the view of the subject which 
we have presented, it would of course follow, 
as the real sovereignty was mainly in the 
king's hands, that at the death of one 
monarch and the accession of another, the 
functions of all officers holding their places 
under the authority of the former would ex- 
pire. This was actually the case. And it 
shows how entirely the Parliament was 
considered as the instrument and creation of 
the king, that on the death of a king, the 
Parliament immediately expired. The new 
monarch must make a new Parliament if 
he wished one to help him carry out his 
own plans. In the same manner almost all 
other offices expired. As it would be ex- 
tremly inconvenient or impossible to appoint 
anew all the officers of such a realm on a sud- 
den emergency, it is usual for the king to issue 
a decree renewing the appointments of the ex- 
isting incumbents of these offices. Thus King 
Charles, two days after his father's death, 
made it his first act to renew the appointments 
of the members of his father's privy council, of 
the foreign ambassadors, and of the judges of 
the courts, in order that the affairs of the em- 


pire might go on witliout interruption. He 
also issued summonses for calling a Parlia- 
ment, and then made arrangements for the 
solemnization of his father's funeral. 

The scene of these transactions was what 
was, in those days, called Westminster. Min- 
ster means cathedral. A cathedral church had 
been built, and an abbey founded, at a short 
distance west from London, near the mouth of 
the Thames. The church was called the West 
minster, and the abbey, Westminster Abbey. 
The town afterward took the same name. The 
street leading to the city of London from West- 
minster was called the Strand ; it lay along the 
shore of the river. The gate by which the city 
of London was entered on this side was called 
Temple Bar, on account of a building just 
within the walls, at that point, which was called 
the Temple. In process of time, London ex- 
panded beyond its bounds and spread westward. 
The Strand became a magnificent street of 
shops and stores, AVestminster was filled with 
palaces and houses of tlie nobility, the whole 
region being entirely covered with streets and 
edifices of the greatest magnificence and splen- 
dor. Westminster is now called the West End 
of London, though the jurisdiction of the city 
still ends at Temple Bar. 

Parliament held its sessions in a building 
near the shore, called St. Stephen's, The king's 


palace, called St. James's Palace, was near. 
The old church became a place of sepulture foi 
the English kings, where a long line of them 
now repose. The palace of King James's wife, 
Anne of Denmark, was on the bank of the river, 
some distance down the Strand. She called it, 
during her life, Denmark House, in honor of her 
native land. Its name is now Somerset House. 

King James's funeral was attended with 
great pomp. The body was conveyed from 
Somerset House to its place of repose in the 
Abbey, and attended by a great procession. 
King Charles walked as chief mourner. Two 
earls attended him, one on each side, and the 
train of his robes was borne by twelve peers 
of the realm. The expenses of this funeral 
amounted to a sum equal to two hundred thou- 
sand dollars. 

One thing more is to be stated before we 
can consider Charles as fairly entered upon his 
career, and that is the circumstance of his mar- 
riage. His father, James, so soon as he found 
the negotiations with Spain must be finally 
abandoned, opened a new negotiation with the 
King of France for his daughter Henrietta 
Maria. After some delay, this arrangement 
was concluded upon. The treaty of marriage 
was made, and soon after the old king's death, 
Charles began to think of bringing home hi? 

LiiuUing (ji llenric'tta Maria at Dover. 


He accordingly made out a commission for a 
nobleman, appointed for the purpose, to act in 
his name, in the performance of the ceremony at 
Paris. The Pope's dispensation was obtained, 
Henrietta Maria, as well as the Infanta, being a . 
Catholic. The ceremony was performed, as 
such ceremonies usually were in Paris, in the 
famous church of Xotre Dame, where Charles's 
grandmother, Mary Queen of Scots, had been 
married to a prince of France about seventy 
years before. 

There was a great theater, or platform, 
erected in front of the altar in the church, 
which was thronged by the concourse of spec- 
tators Avho rushed to witness the ceremony. 
The beautiful princess was married by proxy to 
a man in another kingdom, whom she had never 
seen, or, at least, never known. It is not 
probable that she observed him at the time 
when he was, for one evening, in hsr presence, 
on his journey through Paris. The Duke of 
Buckingham had been sent over by Charles to 
conduct home his bride. Ships were waiting 
at Boulogne, a port nearly opposite to Dover, 
to take her and her attendants on board. She 
bade farewell to the palaces of Paris, and set 
out on her journey. 

The king, in the mean time, had gone to 
Dover, where he awaited her arrival. She 
.landed at Dover on the day 3fter sailing from 


Boulogne, sea-sick and sad. The king received 
his bride, and with their attendants they went 
by carriages to Canterbury, and on the follow- 
ing day they entered London. Great prepara- 
tions had been made for receiving the king and 
his consort in a suitable manner ; but London 
was, at this time, in a state of great distress 
and fear on account of the plague which had 
broken out there. The disease had increased 
during the king's absence, and the alarm and 
anxiety were so great, that the rejoicings on 
account of the arrival of the queen were omit- 
ted. She journeyed quietly, therefore, to 
Westminster, and took up her abode at Somer- 
set House, which had been the residence of 
her predecessor. They had fitted it up for hor 
reception, providing for it, among other con- 
veniences, a Eoman Catholic chapel, where she 
could enjoy the services of religion ir. thelirms 
to which she had been accustomed. 



Charles commenced his reign in 1625. 
Tie continued to reign about twenty-four years, 
Jt will assist the reader to receive and retain 
in mind a clear idea of the course of events 
during his reign, if we regard it as divided into 
tliree periods. During the first, which con- 
tinued about four years, Charles and the Par- 
liament were both upon the stage, contending 
with each other, but not at open war. Each 
party managed, and maneuvered, and struggled 
to gain its own ends, the disagreement widen- 
ing and deepening continually, till it ended in 
an open rupture, when Charles abandoned the 
plan of having Parliaments at all, and at- 
tempted to govern alone. This attempt to 
manage the empire without a legislature lasted 
for ten years, and is the second period. After 
this a parliament was called, and it soon made 
itself independent of the king, and became 
hostile to him, tlie two powers being at open 
war, which constitutes tlie third period. Thus 



we have four years spent in getting into the 
quarrel between the king and Parliament, ten 
years in an attempt by the king to govern 
alono, and, finally, ten years of war, more or 
less open, the king on one side, and the Parlia- 
ment on the other. 

The first four years — that is, the time spent 
in getting really into the quarrel with Parlia- 
ment, was Buckingham's work, for during that 
time Buckingham's influence • with the king 
was paramount and supreme ; and whatever 
was done that was important or extraordinary, 
though done in the king's name, really origi- 
nated in him. The whole country knew this, 
and were indignant that such a man, so un- 
principled, so low in character, so reckless, 
and so completely under the sway of his im- 
pulses and passions, should have such an influ- 
ence over the king, and, through him, such 
power to interfere with and endanger the 
mighty interests of so vast a realm. 

It must not be supposed, however, in conse- 
quence of what has been said about the extent 
of the regal power in England, that the daily 
care and responsibility of the affairs of govern- 
ment, in its ordinary administration, rested 
directly upon the king. It is not possible that 
any one mind can even comprehend, far less 
direct, such an enormous complication of inter- 
ests and of action as is involved in the carrying 


ing on, from day to day, the government of an 
empire. Offices, authorities, and departments 
of administration spring up gradually, and all 
tlie ordinary routine of the affairs of the empire 
are managed by them. Thus the navy was all 
completely organized, with its gradations of 
rank, its rules of action, its records, its account 
books, its offices and arrangements for provi- 
sionment and supply, the whole forming a vast 
system which moved on of itself, whether tlie 
king were present or absent, sick or well, living 
or dead. It was so with the army ; it was so 
with the courts ; it was so with the general 
administration of the government at London. 
The immense mass of business which consti- 
tuted the work of government was all system- 
atized and arranged, and it moved on regu- 
larly, in the hands of more or less prudent and 
careful men, who governed, themselves, by 
ancient rules and usages, and in most cases 
managed wisely. 

Everything, however, was done in the king's 
name. The ships were his majesty's ships, 
the admirals were his majesty's servants, the 
war was his majesty's war, the court was the 
King's Bench. The idea was, that all these 
thousands of officers, of all ranks and grades, 
were only an enormous multiplication of his 
majesty ; that they might do his will and carry 
on his administration as he would himself carry 


it on were he personally capable of attending to 
such a vast detail ; subject, of course, to cer- 
tain limits and restrictions which the laws and 
customs of the realm, and the promises and 
contracts of his predecessors had imposed. But 
although all this action was theoretically the 
king's action, it came to be, in fact, almost 
wholly independent of him. It went on of it- 
self, in a regular and systematic way, pursuing 
its own accustomed course, except so far as the 
king directly interposed to modify its action. 

It might be supposed that the king would 
certainly take the general direction of affairs 
into his own hands, and that this charge, at 
least, would necessarily come upon him, as 
king, day by day. Some monarchs have at- 
tempted to do this, but it is obvious that there 
must be some provision for having this general 
charge, as well as all the subordinate functions 
of government, attended to independently of 
the king, as his being always in a condition to 
fulfill this duty is not to be relied upon. 
Sometimes the king is young and inexperienced ; 
sometimes he is sick or absent ; and some- 
times he is too feeble in mind, or too indolent, 
or too devoted to his pleasures to exercise any 
governmental care. There has gradually 
grown up, therefore, in all monarchies, the 
custom of having a central board of officers of 
state, whom the king appoints, and who takes 


the general direction of affairs off his mind, 
except so far as he chooses to interfere. This 
board, in England, is called the Privy Council. 
The Privy Council in England is a body of 
great importance. Its nature and its functions 
are, of course, entirely different from those of 
the two houses of Parliament. They repre- 
sent, or are intended to represent, the nation. 
The Parliament is, in theory, the nation, as- 
sembled at the king's command, to give him 
their advice. The Privy Council, on the other 
hand, represents the king. It is tho king's 
Privy Council. They act in his name. They 
follow his directions when he ciioopes to give 
any. Whatever they decide npon and decree, 
the king signs — often, indeed; without any idea 
of what it is ; but he 3t^ll "jigns it, and all such 
decrees go forth t^ the world as the king's 
orders in council. The Privy Council, of 
course, would h«\Te its meetings, its officers, its 
records,, its Ttiles of proceeding, and its various 
nsagcR, ^nd these grew, in time, to be laws and 
t\\r\\i'^ \ but still it was, in theory, only a sort 
of t'xpansion of the king, as if to make a kind 
Tvf artificial being, with one soul, but many 
heads and hands, because no natural human 
being could possibly have capacities and powers 
extensive and multifarious enough for the exi- 
gencies of reigning. Charles thus had a coun- 
cil who went on with everything, except so far 

t>— Obarle» I. 


as he chose to interpose. The members were 
generally able and experienced men. And yet 
Buckingham was among them. He had been 
made Lord High Admiral of England, which 
gave him supreme command of the navy, and 
admitted him to the Privy Council. The^e 
were very high honors. 

This Privy Council now took the direction of 
public affairs, attended to everything, provided 
for all emergencies, and kept all the compli- 
cated machinery of government in motion, 
without the necessity of the king's having any 
personal agency in the matter. The king 
might interpose, more or less, as he was in- 
clined ; and, when he did interpose, he some- 
times found obstacles in the way of imme- 
diately accomplishing his plans, in the forms 
or usages which had gradually grown into laws. 

For instance, when the king began his reign, 
he was very eager to have the war for the re- 
covery of the Palatinate go on at once ; and he 
was, besides, very much embarrassed for want 
of money. He wished, therefore, in order to 
save time, that the old Parliament which King 
James had called should continue to act under 
his reign. But his Privy Council told him that 
that could not be. That was James's Parlia- 
ment. If he wanted one for his reign, he must 
call upon the people to elect a new Parliament 
for him. 


The new Parliament was called, and Charles 
Bent them a very civil message, explaining the 
emergency which had induced him to call them, 
and the reason why he was so much in want of 
money. His father had loi't the government a 
great deal in debt. There had been heavy ex- 
penses connected with the death of the former 
king, and with his own accession and marriage. 
Then there was the war. It had been engaged 
in by his father, with the approbation of the 
former Parliament ; and engagements had been 
made with allies, which now they could not 
honorably retract. He urged them, therefore, 
to grant, without delay, the necessary sup- 

The Parliament met in July, but the plague 
was increasing in London, and they had to ad- 
journ, early in August, to Oxford. This city 
is situated upon the Thames, and was then, as 
it is now, the seat of a great many colleges. 
These colleges were independent of each other 
in their internal management, though united 
together in one general system. The name of 
one of them, which is still very distinguished, 
was Christ Church College. They had, among 
the buildings of that college, a magnificent 
hall, more than one hundred feet long, and 
very lofty, built in a very imposing style. It is 
fitill a great object of interest to all who visit 
Oxford, This hall was fitted up for the use of 


Parliament, and the king met the two houses 
tliere, and made a new speech himself, and had 
others made by liis ministers, explaining tlio 
state of public affairs, and gently urging the 
houses to act with pi'omptness and decision. 

The houses then separated, and each com- 
menced its own deliberations. But, instead of 
promptly complying with the king's proposals, 
they sent him a petition for redress of a long 
list of what they called grievances. These 
grievances were, almost all of them, complaints 
of the toleration and encouragement of the 
Catholics, through the influence of the king's 
Catholic bride. She had stipulated to have 3^ 
Catholic chapel, and Catholic attendants, and, 
after her arrival in England, she and Bucking- 
ham had so much influence over the king that, 
they were producing quite a change at court, 
and gradually through all ranks of society, in 
favor of the Catholics. The Commons com> 
plained of a great many things, nearly all, how- 
ever, originating in this cause. The king 
answered these complaints, clause by clause, 
promising redress more or less distinctly. 
There is not room to give this petition and the 
answers in full, but as all the subsequent 
troubles between Charles and the people of 
England arose out of this difficulty of his 
young wife's bringing in so strong a Catholic 
influoace with her to the realm, it may be well 


to^'ve an abstract of some of the principal 
petitions, with the king's answers. 

The Commons said 

That they had understood that popish 
priests, and other Catholics, were gradually 
f^reeping in as teachers of the youth of the 
realm, in the various seminaries of learning, 
and they wanted to , have decided measures 
taken to examine all candidates for such sta- 
tions, with a view to the careful exclusion of 
nil who were not true Protestants. 

Kinf/. — Allowed. And I will send to the 
archbishops and all the authorities to see that 
Uiis is done. 

Commons. — That more efficient arrangements 
•liould be made for appointing able and faithful 
men in the Church — men that will really devote 
themselves to preaching the Gospel to the peo- 
ple, instead of conferring these places and 
salaries on favorites ; sometimes, as has been 
the case, several to the same man. 

The king made some explanations in regard 
to this subject, and promised hereafter to com- 
ply with this requisition. 

Commo7is. — That the laws against sending 
children out of the country to foreign countries 
to be educated in Catholic seminaries should 
bo strictly enforced, and the practise be eu« 
tirely broken up. 


King, — Agreed ; and he would send to the 
lord admiral, and to all the naval officers on 
the coast, to watch very carefully and stop all 
children attempting to go abroad for such a 
purpose ; and he would issue a proclamation 
commanding all the noblemen's children now 
on the Continent to return by a given day. 

Commons. — That no Catholic (or, as they 
called him, popish recusant, that is, a person 
refusing to subscribe to the Protestant faith, 
recusant meaning person refusmg') be admit- 
ted into the king's service at court ; and that 
no English Catholic be admitted into the 
Queen's service. They could not refuse to al- 
low her to employ her own French attendants, 
but to appoint English Catholics to the honor- 
able and lucrative offices at her disposal was 
doing a great injury to the Protestant cause in 
the realm. 

The king agreed to this, with some conditions 
and evasions. 

Commons. — That all Jesuits and Catholic 
priests, owing allegiance to the See of Eome, 

'should be sent away from the country, accord- 
ing to laws already existing, after fair notice 
given ; and if they would not go, that they 

'should be imprisoned in such a manner as to be 
kept from all communication with other per- 


sons, so as not to disseminate their false re- 

King, — The laws on this subject shall be 


The above are sufficient for a specimen of 
these complaints and of the king's answers. 
There were many more of them, but they have 
all the same character and end, namely, to stop 
the strong current of Catholic influence and 
ascendancy which was setting in to the court, 
and through the court into the realm, through 
the influence of the young queen and the per- 
sons connected with her. At the present day, 
and in this country, the Commons will be 
thought to be in the wrong, inasmuch as the 
thing which they were contending against was, 
in the main, merely the toleration of the Cath- 
olic religion. But then the king was in the 
wrong too, for, since the laws against this tol- 
eration stood enacted by the consent and con- 
currence of his predecessors, he should not 
have allowed them to be infracted and virtually 
annulled through the influence of a foreign 
bride and an unworthy favorite. 

Perhaps he felt that he waa wrong, or per- 
haps his answers were all framed for him by 
his Privy Council. At all events, they were 
entirely favorable to the demands of the Com- 
mons. He promised everything. In many 


tilings he went even beyond their demands. It 
is admitted, however, on all hands, that, so far 
as he himself had any agency in making these 
replies, he was not really sincere. He himself, 
and Buckingham, were vei^ eager to get sup- 
plies. Buckingham was admiral of the fleet,, 
and had a great desire to enlarge the force at 
his command, with a view to the performing 
of some great exploit in the war. It is under- 
stood, therefore, that the king intended his 
replies as promises merely. At any rate, the 
promises were made. The Commons were 
called into the great hall again, at Christ 
Cliurch, where the Peerj assembled, and tlie 
king's answers were read to them. Bucking- 
bam joined in this policy of attempting to con- 
ciliate the Commons. He went into their as- 
sem])ly and made a long speech, explaining 
and justifying his conduct, and apologizing, in 
some sense, for what might seem to be wrong. 
The Commons returned to their place of de- 
liberation, but they were not satisfied. Thoy 
wanted something besides promises. Some 
were in favor of granting suj^plies -^in grati- 
tude to his majesty for his gracious answer.'' 
Others thought differently. They did not see 
the necessity for raising money for this foreign 
war. They had greater enemies at home 
(meaning Buckingham and popery) than they 
kad abroad. Besides, if tlie king would stop 


his waste and oxtravagance in bestowing hon- 
ors and rewards, there would be money enough 
for all necessary uses. In a word, there was 
much debate, but nothing done. The king, 
after a short time, sent a message to them 
urging them to come to a decision. They sent 
him back a declaration which showed that they 
did not intend to yield. Their language, how- 
ever, was of the most humble character. They 
called him ** their dread sovereign," and them- 
selves **his poor commons." The king was 
displeased with them, and dissolved the Parlia- 
ment. They, of course, immediately became 
private citizens, and dispersed to their homes. 
After trying gome ineffectual attempts to 
raise money by his own royal prerogatives and 
powers, the king called a new Parliament, tak- 
ing some curious precautions to keep out of it 
such persons as he thought would oppose his 
plans. The Earl of Bristol, whom Buckingham 
had been so jealous of, considering him as his 
rival, was an influential membor ci the House 
of Peers. Charles and Buokirighan? agreed to 
omit him in sending out the royal writs to 
summon the peers. lie petiMoned Parliament, 
claiming a right to his scat. Charles then sent 
him his v/rit but; gave him a command, as his 
sovereign, not to attend the session. He also 
relected four of the prominent men in the 
House of Commons, men ivhom he consi'le^-ad 


most influential in opposition to him and to 
Buckingham, and appointed them to offices 
which would call them away from London ; 
and as it was the understanding in those days 
that the sovereign had a right to command 
the services of his subjects, they were obliged 
to go. The king hoped, by these and similar 
means, to diminish the influence against him 
in Parliament, and to get a majority in his 
favor. But his plans did not succeed. Such 
measures only irritated the House and the 
country. After another struggle, this Parlia- 
ment was dissolved too. 

Things went on so for four or five years, the 
breach between the king and the people grow- 
ing wider and wider. Within this time there 
were four Parliaments called, and, after various 
contentions with them, they were, one after 
another, dissolved. The original subject of 
disagreement, viz., the growing influence of 
the Catholics, was not the only one. Other 
points came up, growing out of the king's use 
of his prerogative, and his irregular and, as 
they thought, illegal attempts to interfere with 
their freedom of action. The king, or, rather, 
Buckingham, using the king's name, resorted 
to all sorts of contrivances to accomplish this 
object. For instance, it had long been the 
custom, in case any member of the House of 
peers was absent, for him to give authority to 


any friend of his, who was also a member, to 
vote for him. This authority was called a 
l^roxy. This word is supposed to be derived 
from procuracy, which means action in the 
place of, and in behalf of, another. Bucking- 
ham induced a great number of the peers to 
give him their proxies. He did this by re- 
wards, honors, and various other influences, 
and he found so many willing to yield to these 
inducements, that ^t one time he had thirty or 
forty proxies in his hands. Thus, on a ques- 
tion arising in the House of Lords, he could 
give a very large majority of votes. The 
House, after murmuring for some time, and 
expressing much discontent and vexation at 
this state of things, finally made a law that no 
member of the House should ever have power 
to use more than two proxies. 

One of the Parliaments which King Charles 
assembled at length brought articles of im- 
peachment against Buckingham, and a long 
contest arose on this subject. An impeach- 
ment is a trial of a high officer of state for 
maladministration of his office. All sorts of 
charges were brought against Buckingham, 
most of which were true. The king considered 
their interfering to call one of his ministers to 
account as wholly intolerable. He sent them 
orders to dismiss that subject from their de- 
liberations, and to proceed immediately with 


til oil' work of Uiying taxes to raise money, or 
he would dissolve the Parliament as lie had 
done before. He reminded them that the 
Parliaments were entirely *Mn his power for 
their calling, sitting, and dissolution, and as 
he found their fruits were for good or evil, so 
they were to continue, or not to be."' If they 
would mend their errors and do their duty, 
henceforward he would forgive the past; 
otherwise they were to expect his irrecon- 
cilable hostility. 

This language irritated instead of alarming 
them. The Commons persisted in their plan 
of impeachment. The king arres't-ed the men 
whom they appointed as managers of the im- 
peachment, and imprisoned them. The Com- 
mons remonstrated, and insisted that Buck- 
ingham should be dismissed from the king's 
service. The king, instead of dismissing him, 
took measures cr> have him appointed, in addi- 
tion to all his •other offices. Chancellor of the 
University of Cambridge, a very exalted sta- 
tion. Parliament remonstrated. The king, 
in retaliation, dissolved the Parliament. 

Thus things went on from bad to worse, and 
from worse to worse again ; the chief cause of 
che difficulties, in almost all cases, being trace- 
able to Buckingham's reckless and arbitrary 
<3onduct. He was continually doing something 
m the pursuit of his own ends, by the rash and 


heedless exercMsc of the vast powers eommitted 
to him, to make extensive and irreparable mis- 
chief. At one time he ordered a part of the 
fleet over to tlie coast of France, to enter tlie 
French service, the sailors expecting that they 
were to be employed against the Spaniards. 
'J'liey found, however, that, instead of going 
against the Spaniards, they were to be sent to 
Rochelle. Rochelle was a tow^n in France in 
possession of the Protestants, and the King of 
France wanted to subdue them. The sailors 
sent a remonstrance to their commander, bej:- 
ging not to be forced to fight against ineir 
brother Protestants. This remonstrance was- 
in form, what is called a Round liohin. 

In a Round Robin a circle is drawn, the pe- 
tition or remonstrance is written within it, and 
the names are written all around it, to prevent 
any one's having to take the responsibility of 
being the first signer. When the commander 
of the fleet received the Round Robin, instead 
of being offended, he inquired into the facts, 
and finding that the case was really as the 
Round Robin represented it, he broke ar/ay 
from the French command and returned to 
England. He said he would rather be hanged 
in England for disobeying orders than to fight 
against the Protestants of France. 

Buckingham might have known that such a 
spirit as this in Englishmen ^as not +o be tri- 


fled with. But ho knew notliing, and thought 
of nothing, except that he wanted to please 
and gratify the French government. When the 
fleet, therefore, arrived in England, he peremp- 
torily ordered it back, and he resorted to all 
sorts of pretexts and misrepresentations of tlie 
facts to persuade the officers and men that they 
were not to be employed against the Protes- 
tants. The fleet accordingly went back, and 
when they arrived, they found that Bucking- 
ham had deceived them. They were ordered 
to Kochelle. One of the ships broke away and 
returned to England. The officers and men 
deserted from the other ships and got home. 
The whole armament was disorganized, and the 
English people, who took sides with the sailors, 
were extremely exasperated against Bucking- 
ham for his blind and blundering recklessness, 
and against the king for giving such a man the 
power to do his mischief on such an extensive 

At another time the duke and the king con- 
trived to fit out a fleet of eighty sail to make a 
descent upon the coast of Spain. It caused 
them great trouble to get the funds for this ex- 
pedition, as they had to collect them, in a great 
measure, by various methods depending on the 
king's prerogative, and not by authority of Par- 
liament. Thus the whole country were dis- 
satisfied and discontented in respect to the fleet 


before it was ready to sail. Then, as if this 
was not enough, Ikickingham overlooked all the 
olficers in the navy in selecting a commander, 
and put an officer of the army in charge of it ; 
a man whose whole experience had been ac- 
quired in wars on the land. The country 
thought that Buckingham ought to have taken 
the command himself, as lord high admiral ; 
and if not, that he ought to have selected his 
commiinder from the ranks of the service em- 
ployed. Thus the fleet set off on the expedi- 
tion, all on board burning with indignation 
against the arbitrary and absurd management 
of the favorite. The result of the expedition 
was also extremely disastrous. They had an 
excellent opportunity to attack a number of 
ships, which would have made a very rich prize ; 
but the soldier-commander either did not knoAv, 
or did not dare to do, his duty. lie finally, 
liowever, effected a landing, and took a castle, 
but the sailors found a great store of wine 
there, and went to drinking and carousing, 
breaking through all discipline. The com- 
mander had to get them on board again imme- 
diately, and come away. Then he conceived 
the plan of going to intercept what were called 
the Spanish galleons, which were ships em- 
ployed to bring home silver from the mines in 
America, which the Spaniards then possessed. 
dn further thoughts he concluded to give up 


this idea, on account of the plague, which, it- 
he said, broke out in his ships. So he came 
back to England with his fleet disorganized, 
demoralized, and crippled, and covered with 
military disgrace. The people of England 
charged all this to Buckingham. Still the 
king persisted in retaining him. It was his 
prerogative to do so. 

After a while Buckingham got into a per- 
sonal quarrel with Eichelieu, who was the lead- 
ing manager of the French government, and 
he resolved that England should make war 
upon France. To alter the whole political 
position of such an empire as that of Great 
Britain, in respect to peace and war, and to 
change such a nation as France from a friend 
to an enemy, would seem to be quite an under- 
taking for a single man to attempt, and that, 
too, without having any reason whatever to 
assign, except a personal quarrel with a minis- 
ter about a love affair. But so it was. Buck- 
ingham undertook it. It was the king's pre- 
rogative to make peace or war, and Bucking- 
ham ruled the king. 

He contrived various ways of fomenting ill 
will. One was, to alienate the mind of the 
king from the queen. He represented, to him 
tliat the queen's French servants were getting 
to be very disrespectful and insolent in their 
treatment of him, and finally persuaded him 


to send them all home. So the king went one 
day to Somerset House, which was the queen's 
residence — for it is often the custom in high 
life in Europe for tlie husband and wife to 
have separate establishments — and requested 
her to summon her French servants into his 
presence, and when they were assembled, he 
told them that he had concluded to send them 
all home to France. Some of them, he said, 
had acted properly enough, but others had been 
rude and forward, and that he had concluded 
it best to send them all home. The French 
king, on hearing of this, seized a hundred and 
twenty English ships lying in his harbors in re- 
taliation of this act, which he said was a pal- 
pable violation of the marriage contract, as it 
certainly was. Upon this the king declared 
war against France. He did not ask Parliament 
to act in this case at all. There was no Parlia- 
ment. Parliament had been dissolved in a fit 
of displeasure. The whole affair was an exer- 
cise of the royal prerogative. He did not dare 
to call a Parliament to provide means for car- 
rying on the war, but set his Privy Council to 
devise modes of doing it, through this same 

The attempts to raise money in these ways 
made great trouble. The people resisted, and 
interposed all possible difficulties. However, 
some funds were raised, and a fleet of a hun- 

7— C)i»rl«i I. 


dred sail, and an army of seven thousand men, 
were got together. Buckingham undertook 
the command of this expedition himself, as 
there had been so mucli dissatisfaction with his 
appointment of a commander to the other. It 
resulted just as was to be expected in the case 
of seven thousand men, and a hundred ships, 
afloat on the swelling surges of the English 
Channel, under the command of vanity, reck- 
lessness, and folly. The duke came back to 
England in three months, bringing home one- 
third of his force. The rest had been lost, 
without accomplishing anything. The measure 
of j)ublic indignation against Buckingham was 
now full. 

Buckingham himself walked as loftily and 
proudly as ever. He got up another fleet, and 
was preparing to set sail in it himself, as com- 
mander again. He went to Portsmouth, ac- 
cordingly, for this purpose, Portsmouth being 
the great naval station then, as now, on the 
southern coast of England. Here a man named 
Eelton, who had been an officer under the duke 
in the former expedition, and who had been ex- 
tremely exasperated against him on account of 
some of his management there, and who had 
since found how universal was the detestation 
of him in England, resolved to rid the country 
of such a curse at once. He accordingly took 
bis station in the passage-way of the house 

CharUt I. face j).8C 

^ AssaBsination of the Duke of Buckingham, 


where Buckingham was, armed with a knife. 
Buckingham came out, talking with some 
Frenchmen in an angry manner, having had 
some dispute with them, and Felton thrust the 
knife into his side as he passed, and, leaving it 
in the wound, walked away, no one having 
noticed who did the deed. Buckingham pulled 
out the knife, fell down, and died. The by- 
standers were going to seize one of the French- 
men, when Felton advanced and said, *'I am 
the man who did the deed ; let no man suffer 
that is innocent." He was taken. They found 
a paper in his hat, saying that he was going to 
destroy the duke, and that he could not sacri- 
fice his life in a nobler cause than by delivering 
his country from so great an enemy. 

King Charles was four miles off at this time. 
They carried him the news. He did not ap- 
pear at all concerned or troubled, but only di- 
rected that the murderer — he ought to have 
said, perhaps, the executioner — should be 
secured, and that the fleet should proceed to 
sail. He also ordered the treasurer to make 
arrangements for a splendid funeral. 

The treasurer said, in reply, that a funeral 
would only be a temporary show, and that he 
could hereafter erect a monument at half tlie 
cost, which would be a much more lasting me- 
morial. Charles acceded. Afterward, when 
Charles spoke to him about the monument, the 


treasurer replied, What would the world say if 
your majesty were to build a monument to the 

Buckingham Execrated by the Populace. 

duke before you erect one for your father ? So 
the plan was abandoned, and Buckingham had 
no other monument than the universal detesta- 
tion of his countrymeu. 



The great difficulty in governing without a 
Parliament was how to raise funds. By the 
old customs and laws of the realm, a tax upon 
the people could only be levied by the action 
of the House of Commons ; and the great ob- 
ject of tlie king and council during Bucking- 
ham's life, in summoning Parliaments from time 
to time was to get their aid in this point. 
But as Charles found that one Parliament after 
another withheld the grants, and spent their 
time in complaining of his government, ho 
would dissolve them, successively, after ex- 
hausting all possible means of bringing them 
to a compliance with his will. He would then 
be thrown upon his own resources. 

Tlie king had soine resources of his own. 
These were certain estates, and lands, and 
other property, in various parts of the country, 
which belonged to the crown, the income of 
which the king could appropriate. But the 
umount which could bo derived from this 



source was very small. Then there were certain 
other modes of raising money, which had been 
resorted to by former monarchs, in emergen- 
cies, at distant intervals, but still in instances 
so numerous that the king considered prece- 
dents enough had been established to make the 
power to resort to these modes a part of the 
prerogative of the crown. The people, how- 
ever, considered these acts of former monarchs 
as irregularities or usurpations. They denied 
the king's right to resort to these methods, and 
they threw so many difficulties in the way of 
the execution of his plans, that finally he would 
call another Parliament, and make new efforts 
to lead them to conform to his will. The more 
the experiment was tried, however, the worse 
it succeeded ; and at last the king determined 
to give up the idea of Parliaments altogether, 
and to compel the people to submit to his plans 
of raising money without them. 

The final dissolution of Parliament, by which 
Charles entered upon his new plan of govern- 
ment, was attended with some resistance, and 
the affair made great difficulty. It seems that 
one of the members, a certain Mr. Rolls, had 
had some of his goods seized for payment of 
some of the king's irregular taxes, which he 
had refused to pay willingly. ISTow it had al- 
ways been considered the law of the land in 
England, that the person and the property of a 


member of Parliament were sacred during the 
session, on the ground that while he was giving 
liis attendance at a council meeting called by 
his sovereign, he ought to be protected from 
molestation on the part either of his fellow-sub- 
jects or his sovereign, in his person and in his 
property. The House of Commons considered, 
therefore, the seizure of the goods of one of the 
members of the body as a breach of their priv- 
ilege, and took up the subject with a view to 
punish the officers who acted. The king sent 
a message immediately to the House, wlrile 
tliey were debating the subject, saying that the 
otticer acted, in seizing the goods, in obedience 
to his own direct command. This produced 
great excitement and long debates. The king, 
by taking the responsibility of the seizure upon 
himself, seemed to bid the House defiance. 
They brought up this question : " AVhether the 
seizing of Mr. Rolls's goods was not a breach 
ot privilege ? " When the time came for a de- 
cision, the speaker, that is, the presiding officer, 
refused to put the question to vote. He said 
lie Iiad been commanded hj the king not to do 
it ! The House were indignant, and immedi- 
ately adjourned for two days, probably for the 
purpose of considering, and perhaps consulting 
their constituents on what they were to do in 
so extraordinary an emergency as the king's 
coming into their own body and interfering 


with the functions of one of their own proper 

They met on the day to which they had ad- 
journed, prepared to insist on the speaker's 
putting the question. But he, immediately on 
the House coming to order, said that he had 
received the king's command to adjourn the 
House for a week, and to put no question what- 
ever. He then was going to leave the chair, 
but two of the members advanced to him and 
held him in his place, while they read some 
resolutions which had been prepared. There 
was great confusion and clamor. Some insisted 
that the House was adjourned, some were de- 
termined to pass the resolutions. The resolu- 
tions were very decided. They declared that 
whoever should counsel or advise the laying of 
taxes not granted by Parliament, or be an actor 
or instrument in collecting them, should be ac- 
counted an innovator, and a capital enemy to 
the kingdom and Commonwealth. And also, 
that if any person whatever should voluntarily 
pay such taxes, he should be counted a capital 
enemy also. These resolutions were read in 
the midst of great uproar. The king was in- 
formed of the facts, and sent for the sergeant 
of the House — one of the highest officers — but 
the members locked the door, and would not 
let the sergeant go. Then the king sent one 
of his owu oflScers to the House with a roes* 


sage. The members kept the door locked, and 
would not let him in until they had disposed of 
the resolutions. Then the House adjourned 
for a week. 

The next day, several of the leading mem- 
bers who were supposed to have been active in 
these proceedings were summoned to appear 
before the council. They refused to answer 
out of Parliament for what was said and done 
by them in Parliament. The council sent 
them to prison in the Tower. 

The week passed away, and the time for the 
reassembling of the Houses arrived. It had 
been known, during the week, that the king 
had determined on dissolving Parliament. It 
is usual, in dissolving a Parliament, for the 
sovereign not to appear in person, but to send 
his message of dissolution by some person 
commissioned to deliver it. This is called dis- 
solving the House by commission. The disso- 
lution is always declared in tlie House of Lords, 
the Commons being summoned to attend. In 
this case, however, the king attended in person. 
He was dressed magnificently in his royal 
robes, and wore his crown. He would not 
deign, however, to send for the Commons. He 
entered the House of Peers, and took his seat 
upon the throne. Several of the Commons, 
however, came in of their own accord, and 
stood below the bar, at the usual place assigned 


them. The king then rose and read the fol- 
lowing speech. The antiquity of the language 
gives it an air of quaintness now which it did 
not possess then. 

*' My Lords, — I never came here upon so un- 
pleasant an occasion, it being the Dissolution 
of a Parliament. Therefore Men may have 
some cause to wonder why I should not rather 
chuse to do this by Commission, it being a 
general Maxim of Kings to leave harsh Com- 
mands to their Ministers, Themselves only exe- 
cuting pleasing things. Yet considering that 
Justice as well consists in Eeward and Praise of 
Virtue as Punishing of Vice, I thought it nec- 
essary to come here to-day, and to declare to 
you and all the World, that it was merely the 
undutiful and seditious Carriage in the Lower 
House that hath made the Dissolution of this 
Parliament. And you, my Lords, are so far 
from being any Causers of it, that I take as 
much comfort in your dutiful Demeanour, as 
I am justly distasted with their Proceedings. 
Yet, to avoid their Mistakings, let me tell you, 
that it is so far from me to adjudge all the 
House alike guilty, that I know there are many 
there as dutiful subjects as any in the World ; 
it being but some few Vipers among them that 
did cast this Mist of Undutifulness over most 
of tbeir !Eyes. Yet to say Truth, there was a 


good Number there that could not be infected 
with this Contagion. 

"To conclude, As those Vipers must look 
for their Reward of Punishment, so you, my 
Lords, may justly expect from me that Favor 
and Protection tliat a good King oweth to his 
loving and faithful Nobility. And now, my 
Lord Keeper, do what I have commanded you." 

Then the lord keeper pronounced the Par- 
liament dissolved. The lord keeper was the 
keeper of the great seal, one of the highest 
officers of the crown. 

Of course this affair produced a fever of ex- 
citement against the king throughout the whole 
realm. This excitement was kept up and in- 
creased by the trials of the members of Parlia- 
ment who had been imprisoned. The courts 
decided against them, and they were sentenced 
to long imprisonment and to heavy fines. The 
king now determined to do without Parliaments 
entirely ; and, of course, he had to raise money 
by his royal prerogative altogether, as he had 
done, in fact, before, a great deal, during the 
intervals between the successive Parliaments. 
It will not be very entertaining, but it will be 
very useful to the reader to peruse carefully 
some account of the principal methods resorted 
to by the king. In order, however, to diminish 
the necessity for money as much as possijble. 


the king prepared to make peace with France 
and Spain ; and as they, as well as England, 
were exhausted with the wars, this was readily 

One of the resorts adopted by the king was 
to a system of Joans, as they were called, 
though these loans differed from those made by 
governments at the present day, in being appor- 
tioned upon the whole community according to 
their liability to taxation, and in being made, 
in some respects, compulsory. The loan was 
not to be absolutely collected by force, but all 
were expected to lend, and if any refused, they 
were to be required to make oath that they 
would not tell anybody else that they had re- 
fused, in order that the influence of their ex- 
ample might not operate upon others. Those 
who did refuse were to be reported to the gov- 
ernment. The officers appointed to collect 
these loans were charged not to make unneces- 
sary difficulty, but to do all in their power to 
induce the people to contribute freely and will- 
ingly. This plan had been before adopted, in 
the time of Buckingham, but it met with little 

Another plan which was resorted to was the 
granting of what was called monopolies : that 
is, the government would select some impor- 
tant and necessary articles in general use, and 
give the exclusive right of manufacturing 


them to certain persons, on tlieir paying a 
part of tlie profits to the government. Soap 
was one of tlie articles thus chosen. The ex- 
clusive right to manufacture it Avas given to a 
company, on their paying for it. So with 
leather, salt, and various other things. These 
persons, when they once possessed the ex- 
clusive right to manufacture an article which 
the people must use, would ahuse their power 
hy deteriorating the article, or charging 
enormous prices. Xothing i)revented their 
doing this, as they had no competition. The 
effect was, that the people were injured much 
more than tlie government was benefited. The 
plan of granting such monopolies by govern- 
ments is now universally odious. 

Another method of taxation was what was 
called tonnage and 2)ounda<je. This was an 
ancient tax, assessed on merchandise brought 
into the country in ships, like the duties now 
collected at our custom-houses. It was called 
tonnage and poundage because the merchan- 
dise on which it was assessed was reckoned by 
weight, viz., the ton and the pound. A 
former king, Edward III. first assessed it to 
raise money to suppress piracy on the seas. He 
said it was reasonable that the merchandise 
protected should pay the expense of the pro- 
tection, and in proper proportion. The Parlia- 
ment iu that day opposed this tax, They did 


not object to the tax itself, but to the king's 
assessing it by his own authority. However, 
they granted it themselves afterward, and it 
was regularly collected. Subsequent Parlia- 
ments had granted it, and generally made the 
law, once for all, to continue in force during 
the life of the monarch. When Charles com- 
menced his reign, the Peers were for renewing 
the law as usual, to continue throughout his 
reign. The Commons wanted to enact the 
law only for a year at a time, so as to keep the 
power in their own hands. The two houses 
thus disagreed, and nothing was done. The 
king then went on to collect the tax without 
any authority except his own prerogative. 

Another mode of levying money adopted by 
the king was what was called ship money. 
This was a plan for raising a navy by making 
every town contribute a certain number of 
ships, or the money necessary to build them. 
It originated in ancient times, and was at first 
confined to seaport towns which had ships. 
These towns were required to furnish them for 
the king's service, sometimes to be paid for by 
the king, at other times by the country, and 
at other times not to be paid for at all. Charles 
revived this plan, extending it to the whole 
country ; a tax was assessed on all the towns, 
each one being required to furnish money 
enough for a certain number of ships. The 


number at one time required of the city of 
London was twenty. 

There was one man who made his name 
very celebrated then, and it has continued very 
celebrated since, by his refusal to pay his ship 
money, and by his long and determined con- 
test with the government in regard to it, in 
the courts. His name was John Hampden. 
He was a man of fortune and high character. 
His tax for ship money was only twenty shil- 
lings, bat he declared that "he would not pay it 
without a trial. The king had previously ob- 
tained the opinion of the judges that he had a 
right, in case of necessity, to assess and collect 
the ship money, and Hampden knew, therefore, 
that the decision would certainly, in the end, 
be against him. He knew, however, that the 
attention of the whole country would be at- 
tracted to the trial, and that the arguments 
which he should offer to prove that the act of 
collecting such a tax on the part of the king's 
government was illegal and tyrannical, would 
be spread before the country, and would make 
a great impression, although they certainly 
would not alter the opinion of the judges, 
who, holding their offices by the king's ap- 
pointment, were strongly inclined to take his 

It resulted as Hampden had foreseen. The 
trial attracted universal attention. It was a 

8— Charlen 1. 


great spectacle to see a man of fortune and 
standing like him, making all those prepara- 
tions, and incurring so great expense, on ac- 
count of a refusal to pay five dollars, knowing, 
too, that he would have to pay it in the end. 
The people of the realm were convinced that 
Hampden was right, and they applauded and 
honored him very greatly for his spirit and 
courage. The trial lasted twelve days. The 
illegality and injustice of the tax were fully 
exposed. The people concurred entirely with 
him, and even a part of the judges were con, 
vinced. He was called the patriot Hampden, 
and his name will always be celebrated in Eng- 
lish history. The whole discussion, however, 
though it produced a great effect at the time, 
would be of no interest now, since it turned 
mainly on the question what the king's rights 
actually were, according to the ancient cus- 
toms and usages of the realm. The question 
before mankind now is a very different one ; 
it is not what the powers and prerogatives of 
government have been in times past, but 
what they ought to be now and in time to 

The king's government gained the victory, 
ostensibly, in this contest, and Hampden had 
to pay hts money. Very large sums were coU 
lected, also, from others by this tax, and a 
great fleet was raised. The perfgrmauces and 


exploits of tlie fleet had some influence in 
quieting the murmurs of the people. The 
fleet was the greatest whicli England had ever 
possessed. One of its exploits was to compel 
the Dutch to pay a large sum for the privilege 
of fishing in the narrow seas about Great Brit- 
ain. The Dutch had always maintained that 
these seas were public, and open to all the 
world ; and they had a vast number of fishing 
boats, called herring-busses, that used to resort 
to them for the purpose of catching lierring, 
which they made a business of preserving and 
sending all over the world. The English ships 
attacked these fleets of herring-])us3es, and 
drove them off ; and as the Dutch were not 
strong enough to defend them, tliey agreed to 
pay a large sum annually for the riglit to fish 
in the seas in question, protesting, however, 
against it as an extortion, for tliey maintained 
that the English had no control over any seas 
beyond the bays and estuaries of their own 

One of the chief means which Charles de- 
pended upon during tlie long period that he 
governed without a Parliament, was a cer- 
tain famous tribunal or court called the Star 
Chamber. This court was a very ancient one, 
having been established in some of the earliest 
reigns ; but it never attracted any special at- 
tention until the time of Charles. His govern- 


ment called it into action a great deal, and 
extended its powers, and made it a means of 
great injustice and oppression, as the people 
thought, or, as Charles would have said, a very 
efficient means of vindicating his prerogative, 
and punishing the stubborn and rebellious. 

There were three reasons why this court was 
a more convenient and powerful instrument in 
the hands of the king and his council than any 
of the other courts in the kingdom. First, it 
was, by its ancient constitution, composed of 
members of the council, with the exception of 
two persons, who where to be judges in the 
other courts. This plan of having two judges 
from the common law courts seems to have 
been adopted for the purpose of securing some 
sort of conformity of the Star Chamber deci- 
sions with the ordinary principles of English 
jurisprudence. But then, as those two law 
judges would always be selected with reference 
to their disposition to carry out the king's 
plans, and as the other members of the court 
were all members of the government itself, of 
course the court was almost entirely under 
governmental control. 

The second reason was, that in this court 
there was no jury. There had never been ju- 
ries employed in it from its earliest constitu- 
tion. The English had contrived the plan of 
trial by jury as a defense against the severity 


of government. If a man was accused of crime, 
the judges appointed by tlie government that 
he had offended were not to be allowed to de- 
cide whether he was guilty or not. They 
would be likely not to be impartial. The 
question of his guilt or innocence was to be 
left to twelve men, taken at hazard from the 
ordinary walks of life, and who, consequently, 
would be likely to sympathize with the accused, 
if they saw any disposition to oppress him, 
rather than to join against him with a tyran- 
nical government. Thus the jury, as they 
said, was a great safeguard. The English have 
always attached great value to their system of 
trial by jury. The plan is retained in this 
country, though there is less necessity for it 
under our institutions. Now, in the Star 
Chamber, it had never been the custom to 
employ a jury. The members of the court 
decided the whole question ; and as they were 
entirely in the interest of the government, the 
government, of course, had the fate of every 
person accused under their direct control. 

The third reason consisted in the nature of 
the crimes which it had always been customary 
to try in this court. It had jurisdiction m a 
great variety of cases in which men were 
brought into collision with the government, 
such as charges of riot, sedition, libel, opposi- 
tion to the edicts of the council, and to proc- 


lamations of the king. These and similar 
cases had always been tried by the Star Cham- 
ber ; and these were exactly the cases which 
ought not to be tried by such a court ; for per- 
sons accused of hostility to government ought 
not to^be tried by government itself. 

There has been a great deal of discussion 
about the origin of the term Star Chamber. 
The hall where the court was held was in a 
palace at AVestminster, and there were a great 
many windows in it. Some think that it was 
from this that the court received its name. 
Others suppose it was because the court had 
cognizance of a certain crime, the Latin name 
of which has a close affinity with the word star. 
Another reason is, that certain documents 
called starray used to be kept in the hall. The 
prettiest idea is a sort of tradition that the 
ceiling of the hall was formerly ornamented 
with stars, and that this circumstance gave 
name to the hall. This supposition, however, 
unfortunately, has no better foundation than 
the otliers ; for there were no stars on the 
ceiling in Charles's time, and there had not 
been any for a hundred years ; nor is there any 
positive evidence Ihat there ever were. How- 
ever, in the absence of any real reason for pre- 
ferring one of these ideas over the other, 
mankind seem to have wisely determined on 
choosing the prettiest of tliem, so that it i» 


generally agreed that the origin of the name 
was the ancient decoration of the ceiling of the 
hall with gilded stars. 

However this may be, the court of the Star 
Chamber was an engine of prodigious power in 
the hands of Charles's government. It helped 
them in two ways. They could punish their 
enemies, and where these enemies were wealthy, 
they could fill up the treasury of the govern- 
ment by imposing enormous fines upon them. 
Sometimes the offenses for which these fines 
were imposed were not of a nature to deserve 
such severe penalties. For instance, there was 
a law against turning tillage land into pastur- 
age. Land that is tilled supports men. Land 
that is pastured supports cattle and shoop. 
The former were a burden, sometimes, to land- 
lords, the latter a means of wealth. Hence 
there was then, as there is now, a tendency in 
England, in certain parts of the country, for 
the landed proprietors to change their tillage 
land to pasture, and thus drive the peasants 
away from their homes. There were laws 
against this, but a great many persons haa 
done it notwithstanding. One of these persons 
was fined four thousand pounds : an enormous 
sum. The rest were alarmed, and made rom- 
poHitionSy as they were called ; that is, they 
paid at once a certain sum on condition of not 
being prosecuted. Thirty thousand pounds 


were collected in this way, which was then a 
very large amount. 

There were in those days, as there are now, 
certain tracts of land in England called the 
king's forests, though a large portion of them 
are now without trees. The boundaries of 
these lands had not been very well defined, but 
the government now published decrees specify- 
ing the boundaries, and extending them so far 
as to include, in many cases, the buildings and 
improvements of other proprietors. They then 
prosecuted these proprietors for having en- 
croached, as they called it, upon the crown 
lands, and the Star Chamber assessed very 
heavy fines upon them. The people said all 
this was done merely to get pretext to extort 
money from the nation, to make up for the 
want of a Parliament to assess regular taxes ; 
but the government said it was a just and 
legal mode of protecting the ancient and legiti- 
mate rights of the king. 

In these and similar modes, large sums of 
money were collected as fines and penalties for 
offenses more or less real. In other cases very 
severe punishments were inflicted for various 
sorts of offenses committed against the personal 
dignity of the king, or the great lords of his 
government. It was considered highly impor- 
tant to repress all appearance of disrespect or 
hostility to the king. One man got into some 


contention with one of the king's officers, and 
finally struck him. He was fined ten tliousand 
pounds. Another man said that a certain 
archbishop had incurred the king's displeasure 
!)y wanting some toleration for the Catholics. 
This was considered a slander against the arch- 
bishop, and the offender was sentenced to be 
fined a thousand pounds, to be whipped, im- 
prisoned, and to stand in the pillory at AVest- 
minster, and at three other , places in various 
parts of the kingdom. 

A gentleman was following a chase as a 
spectator, the hounds belonging to a noble- 
man. The huntsman, who had charge of the 
liounds, ordered him to keep back, and not 
come so near the hounds ; and in giving him 
this order, spoke, as the gentleman alleged, so 
insolently, that he struck him with his riding- 
whip. The huntsman threatened to complain 
to his master, the nobleman. The gentleman 
said that if his master should justify him in 
such insulting language as he had used, he 
would serve him in the same manner. The 
Star Chamber fined him ten thousand pounds 
for speaking so disrespectfully of a lord. 

By these and similar proceedings, large sums 
of money were collected by the Star Chamber 
for the king's treasury, and all expression of 
discontent and dissatisfaction on the part of 
the people was suppressed. This last policy, 


however, the su23pression of expressions of dis- 
satisfaction, is always a very dangerous one for 
any government to undertake. Discontent, 
silenced by force, is exasperated and extended. 
The outward signs of its existence disappear, 
but its inward workings become wide-spread 
and dangerous, just in proportion to the 
weight by which the safety-valve is kept down. 
Charles and his court of the Star Chamber re- 
joiced in the power and efficacy of their tre- 
mendous tribunal. They issued proclamations 
and decrees, and governed the country by 
means of them. They silenced all murmurs. 
But they were, all the time, disseminating 
through the whole length and breadth of the 
land a deep and inveterate enmity to royalty, 
which ended in a revolution of the govern- 
ment, and the decapitation of the king. They 
stopped the hissing of the steam for the time, 
but caused an explosion in the end. 

Charles was King of Scotland as well as of 
England. The two countries were, however, 
as countries, distinct, each having its own laws, 
its own administration, and its own separate 
dominions. The sovereign, however, was the 
same. A king could inherit two kingdoms, 
just as a man can, in this country, inherit two 
farms, which may, nevertheless, be at a dis- 
tance from each other, and managed separately. 
Kow, although Charles had, from th^ de^th of 


hlfl father, exercised sovereignty over the realm 
of Scotland, he had not been crowned, nor had 
even visited Scotland. The people of Scotland 
felt somewhat neglected. They murmured 
that their common monarch gave all his atten- 
tion to the sister and rival kingdom. They 
said that if the king did not consider the Scot- 
tish crown worth coming after, they might, 
perhaps, look out for some other way of dis- 
posing of it. 

The king, accordingly, in 1633, began to 
make preparations for a royal progress into 
Scotland. He first issued a proclamation re- 
quiring a proper supply of provisions to be col- 
lected at the several points of his proposed 
route, and specified the route, and the length 
of stay which he should make in each place, 
lie set out on the 13th of May with a splendid 
retinue. He stopped at the seats of several of 
the nobility on the way, to enjoy the hospitali- 
ties and entertainments which they had pre- 
pared for him. He proceeded so slowly that it 
was a month before he reached the frontier. 
Here all his English servants and retinue retired 
from their posts, and their places were supplied 
by Scotchmen who had been previously appoint- 
ed, and who were awaiting his arrival. He en- 
tered Edinburgh with great pomp and parade, 
all Scotland flocking to the capital to witness 
the festivities. The coronation took place 



three days afterwards. He met the Scotch 
Parliament, and, for form's sake, took a part 
in the proceedings so as actually to exercise 
his royal authority as King of Scotland. This 
being over, he was conducted in great state 
back to Berwick, which is on the frontier, and 
thence he returned by rapid journeys to 

The king dissolved his last Parliament in 
1629. He had now been endeavoring for four 
or five years to govern alone. He succeeded 
tolerably well, so far as external appearances 
indicated, up to this time. There was, how- 
ever, beneath the surface, a deep-sea+ed discon- 
tent, which was constantly widening and ex- 
tending, and, soon after the return of the king 
from Scotland, real difficulties gradually arose, 
by which he was, in the end, compelled to call 
a Parliament again. What these difficulties 
were will be explained in the subsequent chap- 


i-.h I Ml 

H 1 



In getting so deeply involved in difficulties 
with his people, King Charles did not act alone. 
He had, as we have already explained, a great 
deal of help. There were many men of intel- 
ligence and rank who entertained the same 
opinions that he did or who were, at least, 
willing to adopt them for the sake of office and 
power. These men he drew around him. He 
gave them office and power, and they joined 
him in the efforts he made to defend and en- 
large the royal prerogative, and to carry on the 
government by the exercise of it. One of the 
most prominent and distinguished of these 
men was Laud. 

The reader must understand that the Church 
in England, is very different from anything 
that exists under the same name in this coun- 
try. Its bishops and clergy are supported by 
revenues derived from a vast amount of prop- 
erty which belongs to the Church itself. This 

property is entirely independent of all control 



by the people of the parishes. The clergyman, 
as soon as he is appointed, comes into posses- 
sion of it in his own right ; and he is not ap- 
pointed by the people, but by some nobleman 
or high officer of state, who has inherited the 
right to appoint the clergyman of that particu- 
lar parish. There are bishops, also, who have 
very large revenues, likewise independent ; and 
over these bishops is one great dignitary, who 
presides in lofty state over the whole system. 
This officer is called the Archbishop of Canter- 
bury. There is one other archbishop, called 
the Archbishop of York ; but his realm is much 
more limited and less important. The Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury is styled the Lord Pri- 
mate of all England. His rank is above that 
of all the peers of the realm. He crowns the 
kings. He has two magnificent palaces, one 
at Canterbury and one at London, for his resi- 
dences, and has very large revenues to maintain 
a style of living in accordance with his rank. 
He has the superintendence of all the affairs of 
the Church for the whole realm, except a small 
portion pertaining to the archbishopric of York. 
His palace in London is on the bank of the 
Thames, opposite Westminster. It is called 
Lambeth Palace. 

The city of Canterbury, which is the chief 
seat of his dominion, is southeast of London, not 
very far from the sea. The Cathedral is there. 


which is the archbishop's church. It is more 
tlian five hundred feet in length, and the tower 
is nearly two hundred and fifty feet high. Tlie 
magnificence of the architecture and the dec- 
orations of the building correspond with its 
size. There is a large company of clergymen 
and other officers attached to the service of 
the Cathedral. They are more than a hundred in 
number. The palace of the archbishop is near. 

The Church was thus, in the days of Charles, 
a complete realm of itself, with its own prop- 
erty, its own laws, its own legislature, and 
courts, and judges, its own capital, and its own 
monarch. It was entirely independent of the 
mass of the people in all these respects, as all 
these things were entirely controlled by the 
bishops and clergy, and the clergy were gener- 
ally appointed by the noblemen, and the bish- 
ops by the king. This made the system almost 
entirely independent of the community at 
large ; and as there was organized under it a vast 
amount of wealth, and influence, and power, 
the Archbishop of Canterbury, who presided 
over the whole, was as great in authority as he 
was in rank and honor. Xow Laud was Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury. 

King Charles had made him so. He had ob- 
served that Laud, who hud been advanced to 
some high stations in the Church by his father. 
King James, was desirous to enlarge and 


Strengthen the powers and prerogatives of the 
Church, just as he himself was endeavoring to 
do in respect to those of the throne. He ac- 
cordingly promoted him from one post of influ- 
ence and honor to another, until he made him 
at last Archbishop of Canterbury. Thus he 
was placed upon the summit of ecclesiastical 
grandeur and power. 

He commenced his work, however, of 
strengthening and aggrandizing the Church, 
before he was appointed to this high office. 
He was Bishop of London for many years, which 
is a post, in some respects, second only to that 
of Archbishop of Canterbury. While in this 
station, he was appointed by the king to many 
high civil offices. He had great capacity for 
the transaction of business, and for the fulfil- 
ment of high trusts, whether of Church cr 
state. He was a man of great integrity and 
moral worth. He was stern and severe in 
manners, but learned and accomplished. His 
whole soul was bent on what he undoubtedly 
considered the great duty of his life, support- 
ing and confirming the authority of the king, 
and the power and influence of English Epis- 
copacy. Notwithstanding his high qualifica- 
tions, however, many persons were jealous of 
the Influence which he possessed with the king, 
and murmured against the appointment of a 
churchman to such high offices of state. 

CkarU$ I./aeef. it A 

Dr. Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury. 

\ . ; 


There was another source of hostility to 
Laud. There was a hirge part of the people of 
Eugland who were against the Church of Eng- 
land altogether. They did not like a system 
in which all power and influence came, as it 
were, from above downward. The king made 
the noblemen, the noblemen made the bishops, 
the bishops made the clergy, and the clergy 
ruled their flocks ; the flocks themselves having 
nothing to say or do but to submit. It is very 
different with Episcopacy in this country. 
The people here choose the clergy, and the 
clergy choose the bishops, so that power in 
the Church, as in everything else here, goes 
from below upward. The two systems, when 
at rest, look very similar in the two countries ; 
but when in action, the current of life flows in 
contrary directions, making the two diametri- 
cally opposite to each other in spirit and power. 
In England, Episcopacy is an engine by which 
the people are ecclesiastically governed. Here, 
it is the machinery by which they govern. 
Whatever the forms are, the fact must be that 
the people govern here. 

Now in England there was a large and in-^ 
creasing party who hated and opposed the 
whole Episcopal system. Laud, to counteract 
this tendency, attempted to define, and enlarge, 
and extend that system as far as possible. He 
made the most of all the ceremonies of wor- 


ship, and introduced others, which were, 
indeed, not exactly new, hut rather ancient ones 
revived. He did this conscientiously, no douh^. 
thinking that these forms of devotion were 
adapted to impress the soul of the worshiper, 
and lead him to feel, in his heart, the reverence 
v/hich his outward action expressed. Many of 
the people, however, bitterly opposed these 
things. They considered it a return to popery. 
The more that Laud, and those who acted with 
him, attempted to magnify the rites and the 
powers of the Church,the more these persons 
began to abhor everything of the kind. They 
wanted Christianity itself, in its purity, un- 
contaminated, as they said, by these popish 
and idolatrous forms. They were called Puri- 

There were a great many things which seem 
to us at the present day of very little conse- 
quence, which were then the subjects of end- 
less disputes and of the most bitter animosity. 
For instance, one point was whether the place 
where the communion was to be administered 
should be called the communion table or the 
altar ; and in what part of the church it should 
stand; and whether the person officiating 
should be called a priest or a clergyman ; and 
whether he should wear one kind of dress or 
another. Great importance was attached to 
these things ; but it was not on their own ac« 


count, but on account of their bearing on the 
question whether the Lord's Supper was to bo 
considered only a ceremony commemorative of 
Christ's deutli, or whether it was, whenever 
celebrated by a regularly authorized priest, a 
r< ul renewal of the sacrifice of Christ, as the 
Cv tholics maintained. Calling the communion 
table an altar, and the officiating minister a 
priest, and clothing him in a sacerdotal garb, 
countenanced the idea of a renewal of the sac- 
rifice of Christ. Laud and his coadjutors urged 
the adoption of all these and similar usages. 
The Puritans detested them, because they de- 
tested and abhorred the doctrine which they 
seemed to imply. 

Another great topic of controversy was the 
subject of amusements. It is a very singular 
circumstance, that in those branches of the 
Christian Church where rites and forms are 
most insisted upon, the greatest latitude is 
allowed in respect to the gaieties and amuse- 
ments of social life. Catholic Paris is filled 
with theaters and dancing, and the Sabbath is 
a lioliday. In London, on the other hand, the 
number of theaters is small, dancing is con- 
sidered as an amusement of a more or less 
equivocal character, and the Sabbath is rigidly 
observed ; and among all the simple Demo- 
cratic churches of New England, to dance or 
to attend the theater is considered almost 


morally wrong. It was just so in the days of 
Laud. He wished to encourage amusements 
among the people, particularly on Sunday, 
after church. This was partly for the purpose 
of counteracting the efforts of those who were 
inclined to Puritan views. They attached 
great importance to their sermons and lectures, 
for in them they could address and influence 
the people. But by means of these addresses, 
as Laud thought, they put ideas of insubordi- 
nation into the minds of the people, and en- 
croached on the authority of the Churcli and 
of the king. To prevent this, the High- 
Church party wished to exalt the prayers in 
the Churcli service, and to give as little place 
and influence as possible to the sermon, and 
to draw off the attention of the people from 
the discussions and exhortations of the preach- 
ers by encouraging games, dances, and amuse- 
ments of all kinds. 

The judges in one of the counties, at a regu- 
lar court held by them, once passed an order 
forbidding certain revels and carousals con- 
nected with the Church service, on account of 
the immoralities and disorders, as they alleged^ 
to which they gave rise ; and they ordered that 
public notice to this effect should be given by 
the bishop. The archbishop (Laud) considered 
this an interference on the part of the civil 
magistrates with the powers and prerogatives 


of the Church. lie had the judges brought 
before the council, and censured there ; and 
they were required by the council to revoke 
their order at the next court. The judges did 
so, but in such a way as to show that they did 
it simply in obedience to the command of the 
king's council. The people, or at least all of 
them who were inclined to Puritan views, sided 
with the judges, and were more strict in ab- 
staining from all such amusements on Sunday 
than ever. This, of course, made those who 
were on the side of Laud more determined to 
promote these gaieties. Thus, as neither party 
pursued, in the least degree, a generous or 
conciliatory course toward the other, the differ- 
ence between them widened more and more. 
The people of the country were fast becoming 
either bigoted High-Churchmen or fanatical 

Laud employed the power of the Star Cham- 
ber a great deal in the accomplishment of his 
purpose of enforcing entire submission to the 
ecclesiastical authority of the Church. He 
even had persons sometimes punished very 
severely for words of disrespect, or for writings 
in which they censured what they considered 
the tyranny under which they suffered. This 
severe punishment for the mere expression of 
opinion only served to fix the opinion more 
firmly, ^nd disseminate it more widely. Some- 


times men would glory in their sufferings for 
this cause, and bid the authorities defiance. 

One man, for instance, named Lilburne, was 
brought before the Star Chamber, charged 
with publishing seditious pamphlets. Kow, in 
all ordinary courts of justice, no man is called 
upon to say anything against himself. Unless 
his crime can be proved by the testimony of 
others, it cannot be proved at all. But in the 
Star Chamber, whoever was brought to trial 
had to take an oath at first that he would an- 
swer all questions asked, even if they tended to 
criminate himself. When they proposed this 
oath to Lilburne, he refused to take it. They 
decided that this was contempt of court, and 
sentenced him to be whipped, put in the pil- 
lory, and imprisoned. While they were whip- 
ping him, he spent the time in making a 
speech to the spectators against the tyranny of 
bishops, referring to Laud, whom he considered 
as the author of these proceedings. He con- 
tinued to do the same while in the pillory. As 
he passed along, too, he distributed copies of 
the pamphlets which he was prosecuted for 
writing. The Star Chamber, hearing that he 
was haranguing the mob, ordered him to be 
gagged. This did not subdue him. He began 
to stamp with his foot and gesticulate ; thus 
continuing to express his indomitable spirit of 
hostility to the tyranny which he opposed. 


Tliis single case would be of no great conse- 
quence alone, but it was not alone. The at- 
tempt to put Lilburne down was a symbol of 
tlie experiment of coercion which Charles in 
the state, and Laud in the Church, were trying 
upon the whole nation ; it was a symbol both 
in respect to the means employed, and to the 
success attained by them. 

One curious case is related, which turned 
out more fortunately than usual for the parties 
accused. Some young lawyers in London were 
drinking at an evening entertainment, and 
among other toasts they drank confusion to the 
Arclibisliop of Canterbury. One of the wait- 
ers, wlio heard them, mentioned the circum- 
stance, and they were brought before the Star 
Cliumber. Ik^fore their trial came on, tliey 
applied to a certain noblenum to know what 
they should do. ** AVhere was the Avaiter," 
asked the nobleman, ''when you drank the 
toast?" *^At the door." ''Oh! very well, 
then," said he ; ** tell the court that he only 
heard a part of the toast, as he was going out ; 
and that the words really were, ' Confusion to 
the Archbishop of Canterbury's enemies.'" 
By this ingenious plea, and by means of a 
great appearance of humility and deference in 
the presence of the archbishop, the lawyers 
escaped with a reprimand. 

Laud was not content with establishing and 


confirming throughout all England the author- 
ity of the Church, hut he wanted to extend the 
same system to Scotland. When King Charles 
went to Scotland to be crowned, he took Laud 
with him. He was pleased with Laud's en- 
deavors to enlarge and confirm the powers of 
the Church, and wished to aid him in the work. 
There were two reasons for this. One was, 
that the same class of men, the Puritans, were 
the natural enemies of both, so that the king 
and the archbishop were drawn together by 
having one common foe. Then, as the places 
in the Church were not hereditary, but were 
filled by appointments from the king and the 
great nobles, whatever power the Church could 
get into its hands could be employed by the 
king to strengthen his own authority, and keep 
his subjects in subjection. 

We must not, however, censure the king and 
his advisers too strongly for this plan. The;y 
doubtless were ambitious ; they loved power ; 
they wanted to bear sway, unresisted and un- 
questioned, over the whole realm. But then 
the king probably thought that the exercise of 
such a government was necessary for the ordei 
and prosperity of the realm, besides being his 
inherent and indefeasible right. Good and bad 
motives were doubtless mingled here, as in all 
human action ; but then the king was, in the 
main, doing what he supposed it was his du ty 


to do. In proposing, therefore, to build up 
the Church in Scotland, and to make it conform 
to the English Church in its rites and cere- 
monies, he and Laud doubtless supposed that 
they were going greatly to improve the govern- 
ment of the sister kingdom. 

There was in those days, as now, in the Eng- 
lish Church, a certain prescribed course of 
prayers, and psalms, and Scripture readings, 
for each day, to be read from a book by the 
minister. This was called the Liturgy. The 
Puritans did not like a liturgy. It tied men 
up, and did not leave the individual mind of 
the preacher at liberty to range freely, as they 
wished it to do, in conducting the devotional 
services. It was on this very account that the 
friends of strong government did like it. They 
wanted to curtail this liberty, which, however, 
they called license, and which they thought 
made mischief. In extemporaneous prayers, 
it is often easy to see that the speaker is aim- 
ing much more directly at producing a salutary 
effect on the minds of his hearers than at sim- 
ply presenting petitions to the Supreme Being. 
But, notwithstanding this evil, the existence 
of which no candid man can deny, the enemies 
of forms, who are generally friends of the 
largest liberty, think it best to leave the clergy 
man free. The friends of forms, however, pre- 
fer forms on this very account. They like 


what they consider the wholesome and salutary 
restraints which tliey impose. 

Now there has always been a great spirit of 
freedom in the Scottish mind. That people 
have ever been unwilling to submit to coercion 
or restraints. There is probably no race of 
men on earth that would make worse slaves 
than the Scotch. Their sturdy independence 
and determination to be free could never be 
subdued. In the days of Charles they were 
particularly fond of freely exercising their own 
minds, and of speaking freely to others on the 
subject of religion. They thought for them- 
selves, sometimes right and sometimes wrong ; 
but they would think, and they would express 
thair thoughts ; and their being thus unaccus- 
tomed, in one particular, to submit to restraints, 
rendered them more difficult to be governed 
in others. Laud thought, consequently, that 
tliey, particularly, needed a Liturgy. He pre- 
pared one for them. It was varied somewhat 
from the English Liturgy, though it was sub- 
stantially the same. The king proclaimed it, 
and required the bishops to see that it was 
employed in all the churches in Scotland. 

The day for introducing the Liturgy w^as 
the signal for riots all over the kingdom. In 
the principal church in Edinburgh they called 
out '^ A pope ! A pope ! " when the clergyman 
came in witli his book and his pontifical robos. 


Tlie bishop jisoended the pulpit to address the 
people to appease them, and a stool came flying 
through the air at his head. The police then 
expelled the congregation, and the clergyman 
went through with the service of the Liturgy 
in the empty church, the congregation outside, 
in great tumult, accompanying the exercises 
with cries of disapprobation and resentment, 
and with volleys of stones against the doors and 

The Scotch sent a sort of ambassador to 
London to represent to the king that the hos- 
tility to the Liturgy was so universal and so 
strong that it could not be enforced. But the 
king and his council had the same conscien- 
tious scruples about giving up in a contest with 
subjects, that a teacher or a parent, in our day, 
would feel in the case of resistance from chil- 
dren or scholars. The king sent down a proc- 
lamation that the observance of the Liturgy 
must be insisted on. The Scotch i)reparcd to 
resist. They sent delegates to Edinburgh, and 
organized a sort of government. They raised 
armies. They took possession of the king's 
cjistles. They made a solemn covenant, bind- 
ing themselves to insist on religious freedom. 
In a word, all Scotland was in rebellion. 

It was the custom in those days to have, con- 
nected with the court, some half-witted per- 
son, who used to be fantastically dressed, and 


to have groat liberty of speech, and whose prov- 
ince was to amuse the courtiers. He was 
called the king's jester, or, more commonly, 
the fool. The name of King Charles's fool 
was Arcliy. After this rebellion broke out, 
and all England was aghast at the extent of 
the mischief which Laud's Liturgy had done, 
the fool, seeing the archbishop go by one day, 
called out to him, *' My lord ! who is the fool 
now ? " The archbishop, as if to leave no 
possible doubt in respect to the proper answer 
to the question, had poor iVrchy tried and 
punished. His sentence was to have his coat 
pulled up over his head, and to be dismissed 
from the king's service. Had the arclibishop 
let it pass, it would have ended with a laugh 
in the street ; but by resenting it, he gave it 
notoriety, caused it to be recorded, and has 
perpetuated the memory of the Jest to all 
future times. He ought to have joined in the 
laugh, and rewarded Archy on the spot for so 
good a witticism. 

The Scotch, besides organizing a sort of civil 
government, took measures for summoning a 
general assembly of their Church. This as- 
sembly met at Glasgow. The nobility and 
gentry flocked to Glasgow at the time of the 
meeting, to encourage and sustain the assem- 
bly, and to manifest their interest in the pro- 
ceedings. The assembly very deliberately went 


to work, and, not content with taking a stand 
against the Liturgy which Charles had im- 
posed, they abolished the fabric of Episcoi)acy 
- — that is, the government of bishops — alto- 
gether. Thus Laud's attempt to perfect and 
confirm the system resulted in expelling it 
completely from the kingdom. It has never 
lield up its head in Scotland since. They es- 
tablished Presbyterianism in its place, which is 
a sort of republican system, the pastors being 
all officially equal to each other, though banded 
together under a common government ad- 
ministered by themselves. 

The king was determined to put down this 
rebellion at all hazards. lie had made such 
good use of the various irregular modes of rais- 
ing money which have been already described, 
and had been so economical in the use of it, 
that he had now quite a sum of money in his 
treasury ; and had it not been for the attempt 
to enforce the unfortunate Liturgy upon the 
people of Scotland, he might, perhaps, have 
gone on reigning without a Parliament to the 
end of his days. He had now about two hun- 
dred thousand pounds, by means of which, to- 
getlier with what he could borrow, he hoped to 
make one single demonstration of force which 
would bring the rebellion to an end. He raised 
an army and equipped a fleet. He issued a 
proclamation summoning all the peers of tho 


realm to attend him. He moved with this 
great concourse from London toward the north, 
the whole country looking on as spectators to 
behold the progress of this great expedition, 
by which their monarch was going to attempt 
to subdue again his other kingdom. 

Charles advanced to the city of York, the 
great city of the north of England. Here he 
paused and established his court, with all pos- 
sible pomp and parade. His design was to im- 
press the Scots with such an idea of the great- 
ness of the power which was going to over- 
whelm them as to cause them to submit at 
once. But all this show was very hollow and 
delusive. The army felt a greater sympathy 
with the Scots than they did with the king. 
The complaints against Charles's government 
were pretty much the same in both countries. 
A great many Scotchmen came to York while 
the king was there, and the people from all the 
country round flocked thither too, drawn by the 
gay spectacles connected with the presence of 
such a court and army. The Scotchmen dis- 
seminated their complaints thus among the 
English people, and finally the king and his 
council, finding indications of so extensive a 
disaffection, had a form of an oath prepared, 
which they required all the principal persons 
to take, acknowledging allegiance to Charles, 
and renouncing their having any intelligence 


or correspondence with the enemy. The 
Scotchmen all took the oath very readily, 
though some of the English refused. 

At any rate, the state of things was not such 
as to intimidate the Scotch, and lead them, as 
the king liad hoped, to sue for peace. So he 
concluded to move on towards the borders. 
He went to Newcastle, and thence to Berwick. 
From Berwick he moved along the banks of the 
Tweed, which here forms the boundary between 
the two kingdoms, and, finding a suitable place 
for such a purpose, the king had his royal tent 
pitched, and liis army encamped, around him. 

Xow, as King Charles had undertaken to 
subdue the Scots by a show of force, it seems 
tliey concluded to defend themselves by a 
show too, though theirs was a cheajier and 
more simple contrivance than his. Tliey ad- 
vanced, with about three thousand men to a 
place distant perhaps seven miles from the 
English camp. The king sent an army of five 
thousand men to attack them. The Scotch, 
in the mean time, collected great herds of cat- 
tle from all the country around, as the histori- 
ans say, and arranged them behind their little 
army in such a way as to make the whole appear 
a vast body of soldiers. A troop of horsemen, 
who were the advanced part of the English 
army, came in sight of this formidable host 
first, and, finding their numbers so much 

LO— t'li»rle« r. 


greater than they had anticipated, they fell 
back, and ordered the artillery and foot-soldiers 
who were coming up to retreat, and all to- 
gether came back to the encampment. There 
were two or three military enterprises of similar 
character, in which nothing was done but to 
encourage the Scotch and dishearten the 
English. In fact, neither officers, soldiers, 
nor king wanted to proceed to extremities. 
The officers and soldiers did not wish to fight 
the Scotch, and the king, knowing the state 
of his army, did not really dare to do it. 

Finally, all the king's council advised him 
to give up the pretended contest, and to settle 
the difficulty by a compromise. Accordingly, 
in June, negotiations were commenced, and 
before the end of the month articles were 
signed. The king probably made the best 
terms he could, but it was universally con- 
sidered that the Scots gained the victory. 
The king disbanded his army, and returned to 
London. The Scotch leaders went back to 
Edinburgh. Soon after this the Parliament 
and the General Assembly of the Church con- 
vened, and these bodies took the whole 
management of the realm into their own hands. 
They sent commissioners to London to see and 
confer with the king, and these commissioners 
seemed almost to assume the character of am- 
bassadors from a foreign state. These negoti- 



fttions, and the course which affairs were tak- 
ing in Scothmd, soon led to new difficulties. 
Tlie king found that he was losing his kingdom 
of Scotland altogether. It seemed, however, 
as if there was nothing that he could do to re- 
gain it. His reserved funds were gone, and 

Charles I. and his Council. 
his credit was exhausted. There was no 
resource left but to call a Parliament and ask 
for supplies. He might have known, however, 
that this would be useless, for there was so strong 
a fellow-feeling with the Scotch in their al- 
leged grievances among the people of England, 
that he could not reasonably expect any re- 
sponse from the latter, in whatever way he 
might appeal to them* 



During the time that the king had been 
engaged in the attempt to govern England 
without Parliaments, he had, besides Laud, a 
very efficient co-operator, known in English 
history by the name of the Earl of Strafford. 
This title of Earl of Strafford was conferred 
upon him by the king as a reward for his ser- 
vices. His father's name was Wentworth. 
He was born in London, and the Cliristian 
name given to him was Thomas. He was 
educated at the University of Cambridge, and 
was much distinguished for his talents and his 
personal accomplishments. After finishing 
his education, he traveled for some time on 
the Continent, visiting foreign cities and courts, 
and studying the languages, manners, and 
customs of other nations. He returned at 
length to England. He was made a knight. 
His father died when he was about twenty-one, 
and left him a large fortune. He was about 
seven years older than King Charles, so that 

all those circumstances took place before the 


commencement of Charles's reign. For many 
years after this he was very extensively known 
in England as a gentleman of large fortune 
and great abilities, by the name of Sir Thomas 
Went worth. 

Sir Thomas Wentworth was a member of 
Parliament in those days, and in the contests 
between the King and the Parliament he took 
the side of Parliament. Charles used to main- 
tain that hu power alone was hereditary and 
sovereign ; that the Parliament was his coun- 
cil ; and that they had no powers or privileges 
except what he himself or his ancestors had 
granted and allowed them. Wentworth took 
rery strong ground against this. He urged 
Parliament to maintain that their rights and 
privileges were inherent and hereditary as well 
as those of the king ; that such powers as they 
possessed were their own, and were entirely 
independent of royal grant or permission ; and 
that the king could no more encroach upon 
the privileges of Parliament, than Parliament 
upon the prerogatives of the king. This was 
in the beginning of the difficulties between the 
king and tho Commons. 

It will, perhaps, be recollected by the reader 
that one of the plans which Charles adopted 
to weaken the opposition to him in Parlia- 
ment was by appointing six of tho leaders of 
this opposition to the office of sheriff in their 


several counties. And as the general theory 
of all monarchies is that the subjects are bound 
to obey and serve the king, these men were 
obliged to leave their seats in Parliament and 
go home, to serve as sheriffs. Charges and his 
council supposed that the rest would be more 
quiet and submissive when the leaders of the 
party opposed to him were taken away. But 
the effect was the reverse. The Commons 
were incensed at such a mode of interfering 
with their action, and became more hostile to 
the royal power than ever. 

Wentworth himself, too, was made more de- 
termined in his opposition by this treatment. 
A short time after this, the king's plan of a 
forced loan was adopted, which has already 
been described ; that is, a sum of money was 
assessed in the manner of a tax upon all the 
people of the kingdom, and each man was re- 
quired to lend his proportion to the govern- 
ment. The king admitted that he had no 
right to make the people give money without 
the action of Parliament, but claimed the right 
to require them to lend it. As Sir Thomas 
Wentworth was a man of large fortune, his 
share of the loan was considerable. He abso- 
lutely refused to pay it. The king had him 
brought before a court which was entirely under 
his influence and he was condemned to be im- 
prisoned. Knowing, however, that this claim 

Char iM I, /ace p. 134 

Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Strafford. 


on the part of the king was very doubtful, they 
mitigated his confinement by allowing him 
first a range of two miles around his place of 
confinement, and afterward they released him 

He was chosen a member of Parliament 
again, and he returned to his seat more pow- 
erful and influential than ever. Buckingham, 
who had been his greatest enemy, was now 
dead, and the king, finding that he had great 
abilities and a spirit that would not yield to in- 
timidation or force, concluded to try kindness 
and favors. 

In fact there arc two different modes by 
which sovereigns in all ages and countries en- 
deavor to neutralize the opposition of popular 
leaders. One is by intimidating them with 
threats and punishments, and the other buy- 
ing them off with appointments and honors. 
Some of the king's high officers of state be- 
gan to cultivate the acquaintance of AVent- 
worth, and to pay him attentions and civil- 
ities. He could not but feel gratified with 
these indications of their regard. Tliey 
complimented his talents and his powers, 
and represented to him that such abilities 
ought to be employed in the service of the 
state. Finally, the king conferred upon him 
the title of baron. Common gratitude for 
these marks of distinction and honor held 


him back from any violent opposition to the 
king. His enemies said he was bought oflE 
by honors and rewards. No doubt he was 
ambitious, and, like all other politicians, his 
supreme motive was love of consideration 
and honor. This was doubtless his motive 
in what he had done in behalf of the Par- 
liament. But all that he could do as a popu- 
lar leader in Parliament was to acquire a 
general ascendency over men's minds, and 
make himself a subject of fame and honor. 
All places of real authority were exclusively 
under the king's control, and he could only 
rise to such stations through the sovereign's 
favor. In a word, he could acquire only in- 
ftuence as a leader in Parliament, while the 
king could give him power. 

Kings have always, accordingly, a great con- 
trol over the minds of legislators by oifering 
them office ; and King Charles, after finding 
that his first advances to Wentworth were 
favorably received, appointed him one of 
his Privy Council. Wentworth accepted the 
office. His former friends considered that in 
doing this he was deserting them, and betray- 
ing the cause which he had at first espoused 
and defended. The country at large were 
much displeased with him, finding that he had 
forsaken their cause, and placed himself in a 
position to act against them. 


Persons who change sides in politics or in 
religion are very apt to go from one extreme to 
another. Their former friends revile them, and 
they, in retaliation, act more and more ener- 
getically against them. It was so with Straf- 
ford. He gradually engaged more and more 
fully and earnestly in upholding the king. 
Finally, the king appointed him to a very high 
station, called the Presidency of the North. 
11 is office was to govern the whole north of Eng- 
land — of course, under the direction of the 
king and council. There were four countries 
under his jurisdiction, and the king gave him 
a commission which clothed him with enor- 
mous powers — powers greater, as all the peo- 
ple thought, than the king had any right to 

Strafford proceeded to the north, and entered 
upon the government of his realm there, with 
a determination to carry out all the king's 
plans to the utmost. From being an ardent 
advocate of the rights of the people, as he was 
at the commencement of his career, he became 
a most determined and uncompromising sup- 
porter of the arbitrary power of the king. He 
insisted on the collection of money from the 
people in all the ways that the king claimed 
the power to collect it by authority of his pre- 
rogative ; and he was so strict and exacting in 
doing this, that he raised the revenue to four 


or five times what any of his predecessors had 
been able to collect. This, of course, pleased 
King Charles and his government extremely ; 
for it was at a time during which the king was 
attempting to govern without a Parliament, 
and every accession to his funds was of ex- 
treme importance. Laud, too, the archbishop, 
was extremely pleased with his exertions and 
his success, and the king looked upon Laud 
and AVentworth as the two most efficient sup- 
porters of his power. They were, in fact, the 
two most efficient promoters of his destruction. 

Of course, the people of the north hated him. 
While he was earning the applause of the arch- 
bisliop and the king, and entitling himself to 
new honors and increased power, he was sow- 
ing the seeds of the bitterest animosity in the 
hearts of the people everywhere. Still he en- 
joyed all the external marks of consideration 
and honor. The President of the North was a 
sort of king. He was clothed with great pow- 
ers, and lived in great state and splendor. He 
had many attendants, and the great nobles of 
the land, who generally took Charles's side in 
the contests of tlie day, envied Went worth's 
greatness and power, and applauded the energy 
and success of his administration. 

Ireland was, at this time, in a disturbed and 
disordered state, and Laud proposed that AVent- 
worth should be appointed by the king to the 


government of it. A great proportion of the 
inhabitants were Catholics, and were very little 
disposed to submit to Protestant rule. Went- 
wortli was appointed lord deputy, and after- 
ward lord lieutenant, which made him king of 
Ireland in all but the name. Everything, of 
course, was done in the name of Charles. He 
carried the same energy into his government 
here that he had exhibited in the north of 
England. lie improved the condition of the 
country astonishingly in respect to trade, to 
revenue, and to public order. But he governed 
in the most arbitrary manner, and he boasted 
that he had rendered the king as absolute a 
sovereign in Ireland as any prince in the world 
could be. Such a boast from a man who had 
once been a very prominent defender of the 
rights of the people against this very kind of 
sovereignty, was fitted to produce a feeling of 
universal exasperation and desire of revenge. 
The murmurs and muttered threats which 
filled the land, though suppressed, were very 
deep and very strong. 

The king, however, and Laud, considered 
"Wentworth as their most able and efficient co- 
adjutor ; and when the difficulties in Scotland 
began to grow serious, they recalled him from 
Ireland, and put that country into the hands of 
another ruler. The king then advanced him 
to the rank of an earl. His title was the Earl 


of Strafford. As the subsequent parts of his 
history attracted more attention than those 
preceding his elevation to this earldom, he has 
been far more widely known among mankind 
by the name of Strafford than by his original 
name of Wentworth, which was, from this 
period, nearly forgotten. 

To return now to the troubles in Scotland. 
The king found that it would be impossible to 
go on without supplies, and he accordingly con- 
cluded, on the whole, to call a Parliament. 
He was in serious trouble. Laud Avas in serious 
trouble too. He had been indefatigably en- 
gaged for many years in establishing Epis- 
copacy all over England, and in putting down, 
by force of law, all disposition to dissent from 
it ; and in attempting to produce, throughout 
the realm, one uniform system of Christian 
faith and worship. This was his idea of the 
perfection of religious order and right. He 
used to make an annual visitation to all the 
bishoprics in the realm ; inquire into the usages 
which prevailed there ; put a stop, so far as he 
could, to all irregularities ; and confirm and 
establish, by the most decisive measures, the 
Episcopal authority. He sent in his report to 
the king of the results of his inquiries^ asking 
the king's aid, where his own powers were in- 
sufficient, for the more full accomplishment of 
his plans. But, notwithstanding all this dili- 


gence and zeal, he found that he met with very 
partial success. The irregularities, as he called 
them, which lie suppressed in one place, 
would break out in anotlier ; the disposition to 
throw off tlie dominion of bisliops was getting 
more and more extensive and deeply seated ; 
and now, the result of the religious revolution 
in Scotland, and of the general excitement 
which it produced in England, was to widen 
and extend this feeling more than ever. 

He did not, however, give up the contest. 
He employed an able writer to draw up a de- 
fense of Episcopacy, as the true and scrip- 
tural form of Church government. The book, 
when first prepared, was moderate in its tone, 
and allowed that in some particular cases a 
Presbyterian mode of government might be ad- 
missible ; but Laud, in revising the book, struck 
out these concessions as unnecessary and danger- 
ous, and placed Episcopacy in full and exclu- 
sive possession of the ground, as the divinely 
instituted and only admissible form of Church 
government and discipline. He caused this 
book to be circulated ; but the attempt to rea- 
son with the refractory, after having failed in 
the attempt to coerce them, is not generally 
very successful. The archbishop, in his re- 
port to the king this year of the state of things 
throughout his province, represents the spirit 
of non-conformity to the Church of England as 


getting too strong for him to control without 
more efficient help from the civil power ; but 
whether it would be wise, he added, to under- 
take any more effectual coercion in the present 
distracted state of the kingdom, he left it for 
the king to decide. 

Laud proposed that the council should rec- 
ommend to the king the calling of a Parlia- 
ment. At the same time, they passed a resolu- 
tion that, in case the Parliament '^should 
prove peevish, and refuse to grant supplies, 
they would sustain the king in the resort to 
extraordinary measures.'' This was regarded 
as a threat, and did not help to prepossess the 
members favorably in regard to the feeling with 
which the king was to meet them. The king 
ordered tlie Parliament to be elected in De- 
cember, but did not call them together until 
April. In the mean time, he went on raising 
an army, so as to have his miUtary preparations 
in readiness. He, hov/ever, appointed a n:.v 
set of officers to the command of this army, 
neglecting those who were in command before, 
as he had found them so little disposed to act 
efficiently in his cause. He supplied the 
leader's place with Strafford. This change pro- 
duced very extensive murmurs of dissatisfac- 
tion, which, added to all the other causes of 
complaint, made the times look very dark and 


The Parliament assembled in April. The 
king went into the House of Lords, the Com- 
mons being, as usual, summoned to the bar. 
He addressed them as follows : 

" My Lords and gentlemen, — There was 
never a King who had a more great and weighty 
Cause to call his People together than myself. 
I will not trouble you with the particulars. 
I have informed my Lord keeper, and now 
command him to speak, and I desire your At- 

The keeper referred to was the keeper of the 
king's seals, who was, of course, a great officer 
of state. He made a speech, informing the 
houses, in general terms, of the king's need of 
money, but said that it was not necessary for 
him to explain minutely the monarch's plans, 
as they were exclusively his own concern. We 
may as well quote his words, in order to show 
in what light the position and province of a 
British Parliament was considered in those 

*' His majesty's kingly resolutions," said the 
lord keeper, ^' are seated in the ark of his sa- 
cred breast, and it were a presumption of too 
high a nature for any Uzziah uncalled to touch 
it. Yet his Majesty is now pleased to lay by 


the shining Beams of Majesty, as Phoebus did 
to Phaeton, that the distance between Sover- 
eignty and Subjection should not bar you of 
that filial freedom of Access to his Person and 
Counsels ; only let us beware how, with the 
Son of Clymene, we aim not at the guiding of 
the Chariot, as if that were the only Testimony 
of Fatherly Affection ; and let us remember, 
that though the King sometimes lays by the 
Beams and Eays of Majesty, he never lays by 
Majesty itself." 

When the keeper had finished his speech, the 
king confirmed it by saying that he had exag- 
gerated nothing, and the houses were left to 
their deliberations. Instead of proceeding to 
the business of raising money, they commenced 
an inquiry into the grievances, as they called 
them — that is, all the unjust acts and the mal- 
administration of the government, of which 
the country had been complaining for the ten 
years during which there had been an inter- 
mission of Parliaments. The king did all in 
his power to arrest this course of procedure. 
He sent them message after message, urging 
them to leave these things, and take up first 
the question of supplies. He then sent a mes- 
sage to the House of Peers, requesting them 
to interpose, and exert their influence to lead 
the Commons to act. The Peers did so. The 


Commons sent them back a reply that their in- 
terference in the business of supply, which be- 
longed to the Commons alone, was a breach of 
their privileges. ** And," they added, *' there- 
fore, the Commons desire their lordships in 
their wisdom to find out some way for the rep- 
aration of their privileges broken by that 
act, and to prevent the like infringement in 

Thus repulsed on every hand, the king gave 
up the hope of accomplishing anything through 
the action of the House of Commons, and he 
suddenly determined to dissolve Parliament. 
The session had continued only about three 
weeks. In dissolving the Parliament the king 
took no notice of the Commons whatever, but 
addressed the Lords alone. The Commons and 
the whole country were incensed at such ca- 
pricious treatment of the national Legislature. 

The king and his council tried all summer 
to get the army ready to be put in motion. 
The great difficulty, of course, was want of 
funds. The Convocation, which was the great 
council of the Church, and which was accus- 
tomed in those days to sit simultaneously with 
Parliament, continued their session afterward 
in this case, and raised some money for the 
king. The nobles of the court subscribed a 
considerable amount, also, which they lout him. 
They wanted to sustain hini \i\ ii stoutest with 


the Gommons on their own account, and then, 
besides, they felt a personal interest in him, 
and a sympathy lor him in the troubles which 
were thickening around him. 

The summer months passed away in making 
the preparations and getting the various bodies 
of troops ready, and the military stores collect- 
ed at the place of rendezvous in York and New- 
castle. The Scots, in the mean time, had been 
assembling their forces near the borders, and, 
being somewhat imboldened by their success in 
the previous campaign, crossed the frontier, and 
advanced boldly to meet the forces of the king. 

They published a manifesto, declaring that 
they were not entering England with any hos- 
tile intent toward their sovereign, but were 
only coming to present to him their humble pe- 
titions for a redress of their grievances, which 
they said they were sure he would graciously 
receive as soon as he had opportunity to learn 
from them how great their grievances had been. 
They respectfully requested that the people of 
England would allow them to pass safely and 
without molestation through the land, and 
promised to conduct themselve3 with the ut- 
most propriety and decorum. This promise 
they kept. They avoided molesting the inhab- 
itants in any way, and purchased fairly every- 
thing they constimed. "When the English offi- 
cers learned that the Scotch had crossed the 


Tweed, they sent on immediately to London, 
to the king, urging him to come north at once, 
and join the army, with all the remaining forces 
at his command. The king did so, but it 
was too late. He arrived at York ; from York 
he went northward fo reach the van of his 
army, which had been posted at Newcastle, but 
on his way he was met by messengers saying 
tliat they were in full retreat, and that the 
Scotch had got possession of Newcastle. 

The circumstances of the battle were these. 
Newcastle is upon the Tyne. The banks at 
Newcastle are steep and high, but about four 
miles above the town is a place called Newbum, 
where was a meadow near the river, and a con- 
venient place to cross. The Scotch advanced 
in a very slow and orderly manner to Newburn, 
and encamped there. The English sent a de- 
tachment from Newcastle to arrest their prog- 
ress. The Scotch begged them not to inter- 
rupt their march, as they were only going to 
present petitions to the king ! The English 
general, of course, paid no attention to this pre- 
text. The Scotch army then attacked them, 
and soon put them to flight. The routed Eng- 
lish soldiers fled to Newcastle, and Avere there 
joined by all that portion of the army which 
was in Newcastle in a rapid retreat. The 
Scotch took possession of the town, but con- 
ducted themselves in a vory orderly manner. 


and bought and paid for everything they 

The poor king was now in a situation of the 
most imminent and terrible danger. Eebel 
subjects had got full possession of one kingdom, 
and were now advancing at the head of victo- 
rious armies into the other. He himself had 
entirely alienated the affections of a large por- 
tion of Jiis subjects, and had openly quarreled 
Avitli and dismissed the Legislature. He had 
no funds, and had exhausted all possible means 
of raising funds. He was half distracted with 
the perplexities and dangers of his position. 

His deciding on dissolving Parliament in the 
spring was a hasty step, and he bitterly regret- 
ted it the moment the deed was done. He 
wanted to recall it. He deliberated several 
days about the possibility of summoning the 
same members to meet again, and constituting 
them again a Parliament. But the lawyers 
insisted that this could not be done. A disso- 
lution was a dissolution. The Parliament, once 
dissolved, was no more. It could not be brought 
to life again. There must be new orders to 
the country to proceed to new elections. To 
do this at once would have been too humili- 
ating for the king. He now found, however, 
that the necessity for it could no longer be post- 
poned. There was such a thing in the Eng- 
lish history as a council of peers alone, called 


in a sudden emergency which did not allow of 
time for the elections necessary to constitute 
the House of Commons. Charles called such 
a council of peers to meet at York, and they 
immediately assembled. 

In the mean time the Scotch sent ambassa- 
iors to York, saying to the king that they 
were advancing to lay their grievances before 
him ! They expressed great sorrow and regret 
at the victory which they had been compelled 
to gain over some forces that had attempted to 
prevent them from getting access to their sov- 
ereign. The king laid this communication be- 
fore the lords, and asked their advice what to 
do ; and also asked them to counsel him liow 
he should provide funds to keep his army to- 
gether until a Parliament could be convened. 
The lords advised him to appoint commission- 
ers to meet the Scotch, and endeavor to com- 
promise the difficulties ; and to send to the city 
of London, asking that corporation to lend him 
a small sum until Parliament could be assem- 

This advice was followed. A temporary 
treaty was made with the rebels, altliough 
making a treaty with rebels is perhaps tlie 
most humiliating thing that a hereditary sov- 
ereign is ever compelled to do. The Earl of 
Strafford was, however, entirely opposed to 
this policy. He urged the king most earnestly 


not to give up the contest without a more de- 
cisive struggle. He represented to him the 
danger of beginning to yield to the torrent 
which he now began to see would overwhelm 
them all if it was allowed to have its way. He 
tried to persuade the king that the Scots might 
yet be driven back, and that it would be pos- 
sible to get along without a Parliament. He 
dreaded a Parliament. The king, however, 
and his other advisers, thought that they must 
yield a little to the storm. Strafford then 
wanted to be allowed to return to his post in 
Ireland, where he thought that he should prob- 
ably be safe from the terrible enmity which he 
must have known that he had awakened in 
England, and which he thought a Parliament 
would concentrate and bring upon his devoted 
head. But the king would not consent to this. 
He assured Strafford that if a Parliament 
should assemble, he would take care that they 
should not hurt a hair of his head. Unfortu- 
nate monarch ! How little he foresaw that 
that very Parliament, from whose violence he 
thus promised to defend his favorite servant so 
completely as to insure him from the slightest 
injury, would begin by taking off his favorite's 
head, and end with taking off his own I 



The Parliament asgiembled in November, 
1040. The king proceeded to London to meet 
them. He left Strafford in command of the 
army at York. Active hostilities had been 
suspended, as a sort of temporary truce had 
been concluded with the Scots, to prepare the 
way for a final treaty. Strafford had been 
entirely opposed to this, being still full of 
energy and courage. The king, however, began 
to feel alarmed. He went to London to meet 
the Parliament which he had summoned, but 
he was prepared to meet them in a very differ- 
ent spirit from that which he had manifested 
on former occasions. He even gave up all the 
external circumstances of pomp and parade 
with which the opening of Parliament had 
usually been attended. He had been accus- 
tomed to go to the House of Lords in state, 
with a numerous retinue and great parade. 
Now he was conveyed from his palace along the 

river in a barge, in a quiet and unostentatious 



manner. His opening speech, too, was mod- 
erate and conciliatory. In a word, it was pretty 
evident to the Commons that the proud and 
haughty spirit of their royal master was be- 
ginning to be pretty effectually humbled. 

Of course, now, in proportion as the king 
should falter, the Commons would grow bold. 
The House immediately began to attack Laud 
and Strafford in their speeches. It is the the- 
ory of the British Constitution that the king 
can do no wrong ; whatever criminality at any 
time attaches to the acts of his administration, 
belongs to his advisers, not to himself. The 
speakers condemned, in most decided terms, 
the arbitrary and tyrannical course which the 
government had pursued during the intermis- 
sion of Parliaments, but charged it all, not to 
the king, but to Strafford and Laud. Strafford 
had been, as they considered, the responsible 
person in civil and military affairs, and Laud 
in those of the Church. These speeches were 
made to try the temper of the House and of 
the country, and see whether there was hostil- 
ity enough to. Laud and Strafford in the House 
and in the country, and boldness enough in 
the expression of it, to warrant their impeach- 
ment. ** 

The attacks thus made in the House against 
the two ministers were made very soon. AVith- 
in a week after the opening of Parliament, one 


of the members, after declaiming a long time 
against the encroachments and tyranny of 
Archbishop Laud, whose title, according to 
English usage, was **his Grace," said he 
hoped that, before the year ran round, his 
grace would either have more grace or no grace 
at all ; " for," he added, '' our manifold griefs 
do fill a mighty and vast circumference, yet in 
such a manner that from every part our lines 
of sorrow do meet in him, and point at him 
the center, from whence our miseries in this 
Church, and many of them in the Common- 
wealth, do flow." He said, also, that if they 
must submit to a pope, he would rather obey 
one that was as far off as the Tiber, than to 
have him come as near as the Thames. 

Similar denunciations were made against 
Strafford, and they awakened no opposition. 
On the contrary, it was found that the feeling 
of hostility against both the ministers was so 
universal and so strong, that the leaders began 
to think seriously of an impeachment on a 
charge of high treason. High treason is the 
greatest crime known to the English law, and 
the punishment for it, especially in the case of 
a peer of the realm, is very terrible. This pun- 
ishment was generally inflicted by what was 
called a bill of attainder, which brought with it 
the worst of penalties. It implied the perfect 
clestruction of the criminal iii every sense. Ho 


was to lose his life by having his head c-ut off 
upon a block. His body, according to the 
strict letter of the law, was to be mutiwited in 
a manner too shocking to be here described. 
His children were disinherited, and his property 
all forfeited. This was considered as the conse- 
quence of the attcdnting of the blood, which ren- 
dered it corrupt, and incapable of transmitting 
an inheritance. In fact, it was the intention 
of the bill of attainder to brand the wretched 
object of it with complete and perpetual in- 

The proceedings, too, in the impeachment 
and trial of a high minister of state, were always 
very imposing and solemn. The impeachment 
must be moved by the Commons, and tried by 
the Peers. A peer of the realm could be tried 
by no inferior tribunal. When, the Commons 
proposed bringing articles of impeachment 
against an officer of state, they sent first a 
messenger to the House of Peers to ask them 
to arrest the person whom they intended to 
accuse, and to hold him for trial until they 
should have their articles prepared. The House 
of Peers would comply with this request, and a 
time would be appointed for the trial. The 
Commons would frame the charges, and appoint 
a certain number of their members to manage 
the prosecution. They would collect evidence, 
and get everything ready for the trial, WheB 


the time arrived, the chamber of the Ilonse of 
Peers would be arranged as a court room, or 
they would assemble in some other hall more 
suitable for the purpose, the prisoner would be 
brought to the bar, the commissioners on the 
part of the Commons would appear with their 
documents and their evidence, persons of dis- 
tinction would assemble to listen to the pro- 
ceedings, and the trial would go on. 

It was in accordance with this routine that 
the Commons commenced proceedings against 
the Earl of Strafford, very soon after the open- 
ing of the session, by appointing a committee 
to inquire whether there was any just cause to 
accuse him of treason. The committee re- 
ported to the House that there was just cause. 
The House then appointed a messenger to go 
to the House of Lords, saying that they had 
found that there was just cause to accuse the 
Eail of Strafford of high treason, and to ask 
that they would sequester him from the House, 
as the phrase was, and hold him in custody till 
they could prepare the charges and the evidence 
against him. All these proceedings were in 
secret session, in order that Strafford might 
not get warning and fly. The Commons then 
nearly all accompanied their messenger to the 
House of Lords, to show how much in earnest 
they were. The Lords complied with the re- 
quest. They caused the earl to be arresteij 


and committed to the charge of the tisJtei^ of 
the Mack rod, and sent two officers to the Com- 
mons to inform them that they had done so. 

The usher of £he bhick rod is a very impor- 
tant officer of tlie House of Lords. He is a sort 
of siieriff, to execute the various behests of tlie. 
House, having officers to serve under liim for 
this purpose. The badge of his office has 
been, for centuries, a black rod with a golden 
lion at the upper end, which is borne before 
him as the emblem of his authority. A peer 
of the realm, when charged with treason, is 
committed to the custody of this officer. In 
this case he took the Earl of Strafford under 
his charge, and kept him at liis house, properly 
guarded. The Commons went on preparing 
the articles of impeachment. 

This was in November. During the winter 
following the parties struggled one against 
another. Laud doing all in his power to 
strengthen the position of the king, and to 
avert the dangers which threatened himself 
and Strafford. The animosity, however, which 
was felt against him was steadily increasing. 
The House of Commons did many things to 
discountenance the rites and usages of the 
Episcopal Cliurch, and to make them odious. 
The excitement among the populace increased, 
and mobs began to interfere with the service 
in some of the churches in Loudon and West* 

Vharte*M.jue»p, too 

The Earl of Strafford Going to his Trial. 


minster. At last a mob of five hundred per- 
sons assembled around the archbishop's palace 
at Lambeth. This palace, as has been before 
stated, is on the bank of the Thames, just 
above London, opposite to Westminster. The 
mob were there for two hours, beating at the 
doors and windows in an attempt to force ad- 
mission, but in vain. The palace was very 
strongly guarded, and the mob were at length 
repulsed. One of the ringleaders was taken 
and hanged. 

One would have thought that this sort of 
persecution would have awakened some sym- 
pathy in the archbishop's favor ; but it was too 
late. He had been bearing down so mercilessly 
himself upon the people of England for so 
many years, suppressing, by the severest meas- 
ures, all expressions of discontent, that the 
hatred had become entirely uncontrollable. Its 
breaking out at one point only promoted its 
breaking out in another. The House of Com- 
mons scxit a messenger to the House of Lords, 
as they had done in the case of Strafford, say- 
ing that they had found good cause to accuse 
the Archbishop of Canterbury of treason, and 
asked that he might be sequestered from the 
House, and held in custody till they could 
prepare their charges, and the evidence to 
sustain them. 

12— CharlPsI. 


The archbishop was at that time in his seat. 
He was directed to withdraw. Before leaving 
the chamber he asked leave to say a few words. 
Permission was granted, and he said in sub- 
stance that he was truiy sorry to have awak- 
ened in the hearts of his countrymen such a 
degree of displeasure as was obviously excited 
against him. He was most unhappy to have 
lived to see the day in wliicli he was made 
subject to a charge of treason. He begged 
their lordships to look at the whole course of 
his life, and he was sure that they would be 
convinced that there was not a single member 
of the House of Commons who could really 
think him guilty of such a charge. 

Here one of the lords interrupted him to say, 
that by speaking in that manner he was utter- 
ing slander against the House of Commons, 
charging them with solemnly bringing accusa- 
tions which they did not believe to be true. 
The archbishop then said, that if the charge 
must be entertained, he hoped that he should 
have a fair trial, according to the ancient Par- 
liamentary usages of the realm. Another of 
the lords interrupted him again, saying that 
such a remark was improper, as it was not for 
him to prescribe the manner in which the pro- 
ceedings should be conducted. He then witli- 
drew, while the House should consider what 
course to take. Presently he was summoned 


back to the bur of the House, and there com- 
mitted to the charge of the usher of the black 
rod. The usher conducted liim to his house, 
and lie was kept there for ten weeks in close 

At lust the time for the trial of Strafford 
came on, while Laud was in confinement. The 
interest felt in the trial was deep and universal. 
There were three kingdoms, as it were, com- 
bined against one man. Various measures 
were resorted to by the Commons to diminish 
the possibility that the accused should escape 
conviction. Some of them have since been 
thought to be unjust and cruel. For example, 
several persons who were strong friends of 
Strafford, and who, as was supposed, might 
offer testimony in his favor, were charged with 
treason and confined in prison until the trial 
was ov3r. The Commons appointed thirteen 
person? to manage the prosecution. These 
]vrsons were many months preparing the 
charges and the evidence, keeping their whole 
proceedings profoundly secret during all the 
time. At last the day approached, and West- 
minster Hall was fitted up and prepared to be 
tiie scene of the trial. 

Westminster Hall has the name of being the 
largest room whose roof is not supported by 
pillars in Europe. It stands in the region of 
the palaces and the Houses of Parliament at 


Westminster, and has been for seven centuries 
the scene of pageants and ceremonies without 
number. It is said that ten thousand persons 
have been accommodated in it at a banquet.* 
This great room was fitted up for the trial. 
Seats were provided for both houses of Parlia- 
ment ; for the Commons were to be present as 
accusers, and the Lords as the court. There 
was, as usual, a chair of state, or throne, for 
the king, as a matter of form. . There was also 
a private gallery, screened from the observa- 
tion of the spectators, where the king and 
queen could sit and witness the proceedings. 
They attended during the whole trial. 

One would have supposed that the deliber- 
ate solemnity of these preparations would have 
calmed the animosity of Strafford's enemies, 
and led them to be satisfied at last with some- 
thing less than his utter destruction. But this 
seems not to have been the effect. The terrible 
hostilities which had been gathering strength 
so long, seemed to rage all the more fiercely 
now that there was a prospect of their gratifi- 
cation. And yet it was very hard to find any- 
thing sufficiently distinct and tangible against 
the accused to warrant his conviction. The 
commissioners who had been appointed to man- 
age the case divided the charges among them. 

* It is two hundred and seventy feet long, seventy- 
five wide, and ninety high. 


When the trial commenced, they stated and 
urged these charges in succession. Strafford, 
who had not known beforehand what they were 
to be, replied to them, one by one, with calm- 
ness and composure, and yet v/itli great elo- 
quence and power. The extraordinary abili- 
ties which he had shown through the whole 
course of his life, seemed to shine out with in- 
creased splendor amid the awful solemnities 
which were now darkening its close. He was 
firm and undaunted, and yet respectful and 
submissive. The natural excitements of the 
occasion ; the imposing assembly ; the breath- 
less attention ; the magnificent hall ; the con- 
sciousness that the opposition which he was 
struggling to stem before that great tribunal 
was the combined hostility of three kingdoms, 
and that the torrent was flowing from a reser- 
voir which had been accumulating for many 
years ; and that the whole civilized world were 
looking on with great interest to watch the re- 
sult ; and perhaps, more than all, that he was 
in the unseen presence of his sovereign, whom 
he was accustomed to look upon as the great- 
est personage on earth ; these, and the other 
circumstances of the scene, filled his mind with 
strong emotions, and gave animation, and en- 
ergy, and a lofty eloquence to all that he said. 
The truil histed eighteen days, the excite- 
ment increasing constantly to the end. There 


was notliing proved which could with .iny pro^ 
priety be considered as treason. He had man^ 
aged the government, it is true, witli one set 
of views in respect to the absolute prerogatives 
and powers of the king, while tliose who now 
were in possession of power held opposite views, 
and they considered it a matter of necessity 
that he should die. The charge of treason was 
a pretext to bring the case somewhat within 
the reach of the formalities of law. It is one 
of the necessary incidents of all governmental 
systems founded on force, and not on the con- 
sent of the governed, that when great and fun- 
damental questions of policy arise, they often 
bring the country to a crisis in which there can 
be no real settlement of the dispute without 
the absolute destruction of one party or the 
other. It was so now, as the popular leaders 
supposed. They had determined that stern 
necessity required that Laud and Strafford 
must die ; and the only object of going through 
the formality of a trial was to soften the vio- 
lence of the proceeding a little, by doing all 
that could be done toward establishing a legal 
justification of the deed. 

The trial, as has been said, lasted eighteen 
days. During all this time, the leaders were 
not content with simply urging the proceedings 
forward energetically in Westminster Hall. 
They >yQrc Jiuineuyering and managing in every 


possible way to secure the final vote. But, 
notwithstanding this, Strafford's defense was 
so able, and the failure to make out the charge 
of treason against him was so clear, that it was 
doubtful what the result would be. Accord- 
ingly,without waiting for the decision of the 
Peers on the impeachment, a bill of attainder 
against the earl was brought forward in the 
House of Commons. This bill of attainder was 
passed by a large majority — yeas 204, nays 59. 
It was tlien sent to the House of Lords. The 
Lords were very unwilling to pass it. 

Wliile they were debating it, the king sent 
a message to them to say that in his opinion 
tlie earl liad not been guilty of treason, or of 
any attempt to subvert the laws ; and that 
several tilings which had been alleged in the 
trial, and on which the bill of attainder chiefly 
rested, were not true. He was willing, how- 
over, if it would satisfy the enemies of the earl, 
to have him convicted of a misdemeanor, and 
made incapable of holding any public office 
from that time ; but he protested against his 
being punished by a bill of attainder on a charge 
of treason. 

This interposition of the king in Strafford's 
favor awakened loud expressions of displeas- 
ure. Tliey called it an interference with the 
action of one of tlie liouses of Parliament. The 
enemies of Strafford created a great excitement 


against him out of doors. They raised clamor- 
ous calls for his execution among the populace. 
The people made black lists of the names of 
persons who were in the earl's favor, and post- 
ed them up in public places, calling such per- 
sons Straffordians, and threatening them with 
public vengeance. The Lords, who would 
have been willing to have saved Strafford's life 
if they had dared, began to find that they could 
not do so without endangering their own. 
When at last the vote came to be taken in the 
House of Lords, out of eighty members who 
had been present at the trial, only forty-six 
were present to vote, and the bill was passed 
by a vote of thirty-five to eleven. The thirty- 
four who were absent were probably all against 
the bill, but were afraid to appear. 

The responsibility now devolved upon the 
king. An act of Parliament must be signed by 
the king. He really enacts it. The action of 
the two houses is, in theory, only a recom- 
mendation of the measure to him. The king 
was determined on no account to give his con- 
sent to Strafford's condemnation. He, how- 
ever, laid the subject before his Privy Council. 
They, after deliberating upon it, recommended 
that he should sign the bill. Nothing else, 
they said, could allay the terrible storm which 
was raging, and the king ought to prefer the 
peace and safety of the realm to the life of 



any one man, however innocent he might be. 
The populace, in the mean time, crowded 
around the king's palace at Whitehall, calling 
out ^* Justice ! Justice I '^ and filling the air 
with threats and imprecations ; and preachers 
in their pulpits urged the necessity of punish- 
ing offenders, and descanted on the iniquity 







^ '^=3^^^ 


i' ^^^ 





The Tower of London. s 

which those magistrates committed who al- 
lowed great transgressors to escape the penalty 
due for their crimes. 

The queen, too, was alarmed. She begged 
the king, with tears, not any longer to attempt 
to withstand the torrent which threatened to 
sweep them all away in its fury. While things 
were in this state, Charles received a letter 
from Strafford in the Tower, expressing his con- 
sent, and even his request, that the king should 
yield and sign the bill. 

Strafford said, in his letter to the king. 


^' To set your Majesty's conscience at Lib- 
erty, I do most humbly beseech your Majesty 
for Prevention of Evils, which may happen by 
your Eefusal, to pass this Bill. Sir, My Con- 
sent shall more acquit you herein to God, than 
all the World can do besides ; To a willing Man 
there is no Injury done ; and as by God's Grace, 
I forgive all the World, with a calmness and 
Meekness of infinite Contentment to my dis- 
lodging Soul, so. Sir, to you I can give the Life 
of this World with all the cheerfulness imag- 
inable, in the just Acknowledgment of your ex- 
ceeding Favors ; and only beg that in your 
Goodness you would vouchsafe to cast your 
gracious Eegard upon my poor Son and his 
tliree sisters, less or more, and no otlierwise 
than as their unfortunate Father may here- 
after appear more or less guilty of this Death. 
God long preserve your Majesty."' 

On receiving this letter the king caused the 
bill to be signed. He would not do it with his 
own hands, but commissioned two of his coun- 
cil to do it in his name. He then sent a mes- 
senger to Strafford to announce the decision, 
and to inform him that he must prepare to die. 
The messenger observed that the earl seemed 
surprised ; and after hearing that the king had 
signed the bill, he quoted, in a tone of despair, 
the words of Scripture, ^^Put not your trust in 


princes, nor in tlie sons of men, for in tluni is 
no salvation." Historians have thought it 
strange that Stratford shouhl liave expressed 
til is disappointment when he had himself re- 
quested the king to resist the popular will no 
longer ; and they infer from it that he was not 
sinc(ire in the request, but supposed tliat the 
king would regard it as an act of nobleness and 
generosity on his part, that would render him 
more unwilling than ever to consent to his 
destruction, and that he was accordingly sur- 
prised and disappointed when he found that the 
king had taken him at his word. It is said, 
liowever, by some historians, that this letter 
was a forgery, and that it was written by some 
of Strafford's enemies to lead the king to resist 
no longer. The reader, by perusing the let- 
ter again, can perhaps form some judgment 
wliether such a document was more likely to 
have been fabricated by enemies, or really writ- 
ten by the unhappy prisoner himself. 

The king did not entirely give up the hope 
of saving his friend, even after the bill of at- 
tainder was signed. He addressed the follow- 
ing message to the House of Lords : 

'^ My Lords, — I did yesterday satisfy the 
Justice of this Kingdom by passing the Bill 
of Attainder against the Earl of Strafford : 
but Mercy being as inherent and inseparable 


to a King as Justice, I desire at tins time in 
some measure to shew that likewise, by suffer- 
ing that unfortunate Man to fulfil the natural 
course of his Life in a close Imprisonment : 
yet so, if ever he make the least Offer to 
escape, or offer directly or indirectly to meddle 
in any sort of public Business, especially with 
Me either by Message or Letter, it shall cost 
him liis Life without farther Process. This, 
if it may be done without the Discontentment 
of my People, will be an unspeakable Content- 
ment to me. 

*'I will not say that your complying with 
me in this my intended Mercy, shall make me 
more willing, but certainly 'twill make me 
more cheerful in granting your Just Grievances : 
But if no less than his Life can satisfie my 
People, I must say Let justice be done. Thus 
again recommending the consideration of my 
Intention to you, I rest, 

" Your Unalterable and Affectionate Friend, 

" Charles R." 

The Lords were inexorable. Three days 
from the time of signing the bill, arrangements 
were made for conducting the prisoner to the 
scaffold. Laud, who had been his friend and 
fellow-laborer in the king's service, was con- 
fined also in the Tower, awaiting his turn to 
come to trial. They were not allowed to visit 

r •-■■ 



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The Earl oi Strafford led to executioo. 


each otlier, but Strafford sent word to Laud 
requesting him to be at his window at the time 
when he was to pass, to bid him farewell and 
to give him his blessing. Laud accordingly 
aj^peared at the window, and Strafford, as he 
passed, asked for the prelate's prayers and for 
liis blessing. The old man, for Laud was now 
nearly seventy years of age, attempted to 
speak, but he could not command himself suf- 
ficiently to express what he wished to say, and 
he fell back into the arms of his attendants. 
*' God protect you," said Strafford, and walked 
calmly on. 

lie Avent to the place of execution with the 
composure and courage of a hero. He spoke 
freely to those around him, asserted his inno- 
cence, sent messages to his absent friends, and 
said he waS ready and willing to die. The 
scaffold, in such executions as this, is a plat- 
form slightly raised, with a block and chairs 
upon it, all covered with black cloth. A part 
of the dress has to be removed just before the 
execution, in order that the neck of the suf- 
ferer may be fully exposed to the impending 
blow. Strafford made these preparations him- 
self, and said, as he did so, that lie was in no 
wise afraid of death, but that he should lay 
his head upon that block as cheerfully as he 
ever did upon his pillow. 



Charles found his position in no respect im- 
proved by the execution of Strafford. Tlie 
Commons, finding their influence and power 
increasing, grew more and more bold, and were 
from this time so absorbed in the events con- 
nected with the progress of their quarrel with 
the king, that they left Laud to pine in his 
prison for about four years. They then found 
time to act over again the solemn and awful 
scene of a trial for treason before the House of 
Peers, the passing of a bill of attainder, and 
an execution on Tower Hill. Laud was over 
seventy years of age when the ax fell upon him. 
He submitted to his fate with a calmness and 
heroism in keeping with his age and his char- 
acter. He said, in fact, that none of his ene- 
mies could be more desirous to send him out of 
life than he was to go. 



The way in which the king came at last to a 
final rupture with Parliament was this. The 
victory which the Commons gained in the case 
of Strafford had greatly increased their con- 
fidence and their power, and the king found, 
for some months afterward, that instead of be- 
ing satisfied witli tlie concessions he had made, 
they were continually demanding more. The 
more he yielded, the more they encroached. 
They grew, in a word, bolder and bolder, in 
proportion to their success. They considered 
themselves doing the state a great and good 
service by disarming tyranny of its power. 
The king, on tlie other hand, considered them 
as undermining all the foundations of good 
government, and as depriving him of personal 
rights, the most sacred and solemn that could 
vest in any human being. 

It will be recollected that on former occa- 
sions, when tlie king had got into contention 
with a Parliament, he had dissolved it, and 

either attempted to govern without one, or else 
i.;. Churl*. I 171 


had called for a new election, hoping that the 
new members would be more compliant. But 
he could not dissolve the Parliament now. 
They had provided against this danger. At 
the time of the trial of Strafford, they brought 
in a bill into the Commons providing that 
thenceforth the Houses could not be prorogued 
or dissolved without their own consent. The 
Commons, of course, passed the bill very read- 
ily. The Peers were more reluctant, but they 
did not dare to reject it. The king was ex- 
tremely unwilling to sign the bill ; but, amid 
the terrible excitements and dangers of that 
trial, he was overborne by the influences of 
danger and intimidation which surrounded 
him. He signed the bill. Of course the Com- 
mons were, thereafter, their own masters. 
However dangerous or destructive the king 
might consider their course of conduct to be, 
he could now no longer arrest it, as heretofore, 
by a dissolution. 

He went on, therefore, till the close of 1641, 
yielding slowly and reluctantly, and with many 
struggles, but still all the time yielding, to the 
resistless current which bore him along. At 
last he resolved to yield no longer. After re- 
treating so long, he determined suddenly and 
desperately to face about and attack his ene- 
mies. The whole world looked on with aston- 
ishment at such a sudden change of hie policy. 

\ ; 


The measure wliicli he resorted to Avas this. 
lie determined to select a number of the most 
efficient and prominent men in Parliament, 
who liad been leaders in the proceedings against 
him, and demand their arrest, imprisonment, 
and trial, on a charge of high treason. The 
king was influenced to do this partly by the ad- 
vice of the queen, and of the ladies of the court, 
and other persons who did not understand how 
deep and strong the torrent was which they 
tlms urged him to attempt to stem. They 
tlioughtthat if he would show a little courage 
nnd energy in facing these men, they would 
yield in their turn, and that their boldness and 
success was owing, in a great measure, to the 
king's want of spirit in resisting them. 
*' Strike boldly at them," said they; *' seize 
the leaders ; have them tried, and condemned, 
and executed. Threaten the rest with the 
same fate ; and follow up these measures with 
energetic and decisive action, and you will soon 
make a change in the aspect of affairs." 

The king adopted this policy, and he did 
make a change in the aspect of affairs, but not 
such a change as his advisers had anticipated. 
The Commons were thrown suddenly into a 
state of astonishment one day by the appear- 
ance of a king's officer in the House, who rose 
and read articles of a charge of treason against 
five of the most influential and popular mem- 


bers. Tlie officer asked that a committee 
should be appointed to hear the evidence 
against them which the king was preparing. 
The Commons, on hearing this, immediately 
voted, that if any person should attempt even 
to seize the papers of the persons accused, it 
should be lawful for them to resist such an 
attempt by every means in their power. 

Tlie next day another officer appeared at the 
bar of the House of Commons, and spoke as 
follows : ^^ I am commanded by the king's 
majesty, my master, upon my allegiance, that 
I should come to the House of Commons, and 
require of Mr. Speaker five gentlemen, mem- 
bers of the House of Commons ; and those 
gentlemen being delivered, I am commanded 
to arrest them in his majesty's name, on a 
charge of high treason." The Commons, on 
hearing this demand, voted that they would 
take it into consideration ! 

The king's friends and advisers urged him 
to follow the matter up vigorously. Every- 
thing depended, they said, on firmness and de- 
cision. The next da3^ accordingly, the king 
determined to go himself to the House, and 
make the demand in person. A lady of the 
court, who was made acquainted with this 
plan, sent notice of it to the House. In going, 
the king took his guard with him, and several 
personal attendants. The number of soldiers 


was said to be five hundred. He left this 
great retinue at the door, and he himself en- 
tered the House. The Commons, when they 
heard tliat he was coming, had ordered the 
five members who were accused to withdraw. 
They went out just before the king came in. 
The king advanced to the speaker's chair, took 
his seat, and made the following address. 

" Grentlemen, — I am sorry for this occasion 
of coming unto you. Yesterday I sent a Ser- 
geant at Arms upon a very important occasion 
to apprehend some that by my Command were 
accused of High Treason ; whereunto I did ex. 
pect Obedience and not a message. And I 
must declare unto you here, that albeit no king 
that ever was in England shall be more careful 
of your Privileges, to maintain them to the ut- 
termost of his Power, than I shall be ; yet you 
must know that in cases of Treason no Person 
hath a Privilege ; and tlierefore I am come to 
know if any of those Persons that were accused 
are here. For I must tell you, Gentlemen, 
that so long as these Persons that I have ac- 
cused (for no slight Crime, but for Treason) 
are here, I cannot expect that this House will 
be in the right way that I do heartily wish it. 
Therefore I am come to tell you that I must 
have them wherever I find them." 

After looking around, and finding that the 

1T6 i:i:40 chakles i. 

members in question were not in the hall, hs 
continued : 

''Weill since I see the Birds are flown, I 
do expect from you that you sliall send them 
unto me as soon as they return hither. But I 
assure you, on the Word of a King, I never did 
intend any Force, hut shall proceed against 
til em in a legal and fair way, for I never meant 
any otlier. 

*' I will trouble you no more, but tell you I 
do expect, as soon as they come to the House, 
you will send tliem to me, otherwise I must 
take my own course to find them." 

The king's coming thus into the House of 
Commons, and denuuidiiig in person that they 
should act according to his instructions, was a 
very extraordinary circumstance — perhaps un- 
paralleled in Engiisli history. It produced the 
greatest excitement. When he had finished 
liis address, lie turned to the speaker and asked 
liim where those men were. He had his guard 
ready at the door to seize them. It is difficult 
for us, in this country, to understand fully to 
h(v,Y severe a test this sudden question put the 
presence of miiid and courage of the speaker ; 
for we cannot realize the profound and awful 
deference which was felt in those days for the 
command of a king. The speaker gained great 

Chart f J. J 

King Charles I. and t-he Commone. 


applause for tlie manner in whieli he stood the 
trial. He fell upon his knees before the great 
potentate who had addressed him, and said, 
'• I have, sir, neither eyes to see, nor tongue to 
speak, in this place, but as the House is pleased 
to direct me, whose servant I am. And I 
luimbly ask pardon that I cannot give any 
other answer to what your majesty is pleased 
to demand of me." 

The House was immediately in a state of 
great excitement and confusion. They called 
out '^Privilege! privilege!" meaning that 
their privileges were violated. They immedi- 
ately adjourned. News of the affair spread 
everywhere with the greatest rapidity, and 
])roduced universal and intense excitement. 
The king's friends were astonished at such an 
act of rashness and folly, which, it is said, only 
0)ie of the king's advisers knew anything about, 
and he immediately fled. The five members 
accused went that night into the city of Lon- 
don, and called on the government and people 
of London to protect them. The people armed 
themselves. In a word, the king found at 
night that he had raised a very threatening 
and terrible storm. 

The Commons met the next morning, but 
did not attempt to transact business. They 
simply voted that it was useless for them to 
proceed with their deliberations, while exposed 


to such violations of their rights. They ap- 
pointed a committee of twenty-four to inquire 
into and report the circumstances of the king's 
intrusion into their councils, and to consider 
how this breach of their privileges could be re- 
paired. They ordered this committee to sit in 
the city of London, where they might hope to 
be safe from such interruptions, and then the 
House adjourned for a week, to await the re- 
sult of the committee's deliberations. 

The committee went to London. In the 
mean time news went all over the kingdom 
that the House of Commons had been com- 
pelled to suspend its sittings on account of an 
illegal and unwarrantable interference with 
their proceedings on the part of the king. The 
king was alarmed ; but those who had advised 
him to adopt this measure told him that he 
must not falter now. He must persevere and 
carry his point, or all would be lost. 

He accordingly did persevere. He brought 
troops and arms to his palace at Whitehall, to 
be ready to defend it in case of attack. He 
sent in to London, and ordered the lord mayor 
to assemble the city- authorities at the Guild- 
hall, which is the great city hall of London ; 
and then, with a retinue of noblemen, he 
went in to meet them. The people shouted, 
** Privileges of Parliament ! privileges of Par- 
liamenf!" as he passed along. Some called 


out, " To your tents, Israel! ^' which was the 
ancient Hebrew cry of rebellion. The king, 
however, persevered. Wlien he reached the 
Guildhall, he addressed the city authorities 
thus : 

^' Gentlemen, — I am come to demand such 
Persons as I have already accused of High 
Treason, and do believe are shrouded in the 
City. I hope no good Man will keep them 
from Me. Their Offenses are Treason and 
Misdemeanors of a high Nature. I desire your 
Assistance, that they may be brought to a 
legal Trial. '^ Three days after this the king 
issued a proclamation, addressed to all magis- 
trates and officers of justice everywhere, to 
arrest the accused members and carry them to 
the Tower. 

In the mean time the committee of twenty- 
four continued their session in London, exam- 
ining witnesses and preparing their report. 
When the time arrived for the House of Com- 
mons to meet again, which was on the 11th of 
January, the city made preparations to have 
the committee escorted in an imposing manner 
from the Guildhall to Westminster. A vast 
amount of the intercommunication and traffic 
between different portions of the city then, as 
now, took place upon the river, though in those 
days it was managed by watermen, who rowed 
email wherries to and fro.. Innumerable steam- 


boats take the place of the wherries at the 
present day, and stokers and engineers have 
superseded the watermen. The watermen 
were then, however,, a large and formidable 
body, banded together, like the other trades of 
London, in one great organization. This great 
company turned out on this occasion, and 
attended the committee in barges on the 
river, while the military companies of the city 
marched along the streets upon the land. The 
committee themselves went in barges on the 
water, and all London flocked to see the spec- 
tacle. The king, hearing of these arrange- 
ments, was alarmed for his personal safety, 
and left his palace at Whitehall to go to 
Hampton Court, which was a little way out of 

The committee, after entering the House, 
reported that the transactions which they had 
been considering constituted a high breach of 
the privileges of the House, and was a seditious 
act, tending to a subversion of the peace of the 
kingdom ; and that the privileges of Parlia- 
ment, so violated and broken, could not be 
sufficiently vindicated, unless his majesty 
would be pleased to inform them who advised 
him to do such a deed. 

The king was more and more seriously 
alarmed. He found that the storm of public 
odium and indignation was too great for him 


to withstand. He began to fear for his own 
safety more than ever. He removed from 
Hampton Court to Windsor Castle, a stronger 
place, and more remote from London than 
Ilampton Court ; and he now determined to 
give up the contest. He sent a message, there- 
fore, to the House, saying that, on further re- 
tlection, since so many persons had doubts 
whether Iiis proceedings against the five mem- 
bers were consistent with the privileges of 
Parliament, he would waive them, and the 
whole subject might rest until the minds of 
men were more composed, and then, if he pro- 
ceeded against tlie accused members at all, he 
would do so in a manner to which no exception 
could be taken. He said, also, he would hence- 
forth be as careful of their privileges as he 
sliould be of his own life or crown. 

Thus he acknowledged himself vanquished 
in tlie struggle, but the acknowledgment came 
too late to save him. The excitement increased, 
and spread in every direction. The party of 
the king and that of the Parliament disputed 
for a few months about these occurrences, and 
others growing out of them, and then each 
began to maneuver and struggle to get posses- 
sion of the military power of the kingdom. 
The king, finding himself not safe in the 
vicinity of London, retreated to York, an(| 
began to assemble and organize his followers. 


Parliament sent him a declaration that if he 
did not disband the forces which he was assem- 
bling, they should be compelled to provide 
measures for securing the peace of the king- 
dom. The king replied by proclamations call- 
ing upon his subjects to join his standard. In 
a word, before midsummer, the country was 
plunged in the horrors of civil war. 

A civil war, that is, a war between two 
parties in the same country, is generally far 
more savage and sanguinary than any other. 
Tlie hatred and the animosities which it cre- 
ates, ramify throughout the country, and pro- 
duce universal conflict and misery. If there 
were a war between France and England, 
tliere might be one, or perhaps two invading 
armies of Frenchmen attempting to penetrate 
into the interior. All England would be united 
against them. Husbands and wives, parents 
and children, neighbors and friends, would be 
drawn together more closely than ever ; while 
tlie awful scenes of war and bloodshed, the 
excitement, the passion, the terror, would be 
confined to a few detached spots, or to a few 
lines of march which the invading armies had 

In a civil war, however, it is very different. 
Every distinct portion of the country, every 
village and hamlet, and sometimes almost eve-ry 
family, is divided against itself. The hostility 


fliul hatred, too, between the combatants, is 
alw.'iys far more intense and bitter than that 
which is felt against a foreign foe. AVe might 
at first be surprised at this. We might imagine 
that where men are contending witli their 
neighbors and fellow-townsmen, the recollec- 
tion of past friendships and good-will, and 
various lingering ties of regard, would moder- 
ate the fierceness of their anger, and make 
tliem more considerate and forbearing. But 
this is not found to be the case. Each party 
considers the other as not only enemies, but 
traitors, and accordingly they hate and abhor 
L'ach other with a double intensity. If an 
Englishman has a Frencliman to combat, he 
meets him with a murderous impetuosity, it is 
true, but without any special bitterness of 
animosity. lie expects the Frencliman to be 
his enemy. He even thinks he has a sort of 
natural right to be so. He will kill him if he 
can ; but then, if he takes him prisoner, there 
is nothing in his feelings toward him to pre- 
vent his treating him with generosity, and 
even with kindness. He hates him, but there 
is a sort of good-nature in his hatred, after nil. 
On the other hand, when he fights against his 
countrymen in a civil war, he abhors and hates 
witli unmingled bitterness the traitorous ingrati- 
tude which he thinks his neighbors and friends 
evince in turning enemies to their country. 


He can see no honesty, no truth, no courage 
in anything they do. They are infinitely Worse, 
in his estimation, than the most ferocious 
of foreign foes. Civil war is, consequently, al- 
ways the means of far wider and more ter- 
rible mischief than any other human calamity. 

In the contention between Charles and the 
Parliament, the various elements of the social 
state adhered to one side or the other, according 
to their natural predilections. The Episco- 
palians generally joined the king, the Presby- 
terians the Parliament. The gentry and the 
nobility favored the king ; the mechanics, 
artisans, merchants, and common people the 
Parliament. The rural districts of country, 
which were under the control of the great 
landlords, the king ; the cities and towns, the 
Parliament. The gay, and fashionable, and 
worldly, the king; the serious-minded and 
austere, the Parliament. Thus everything 
was divided. The quarrel ramified to every 
hamlet and to every fireside, and the peace and 
happiness of the realm were effectually des- 

Both sides began to raise armies and to pre- 
pare for war. Before commencing hostilities, 
however, the king was persuaded by his coun- 
selors to send a messenger to London and pro- 
pose some terms of accommodation. He ac- 
cordingly sent the Earl of Southampton to the 


House of Peers, and two other persons to th»^ 
House of Commons. He had no expectation, 
probably, of making peace, but he wanted to 
gain time to get his army together, and also to 
strengthen his cause among the people by 
showing a disposition to do all in his power to 
avoid open war. The messengers of the king 
went to London, and made their appearance in 
the two houses of Parliament. 

The House of Lords ordered the Earl of 
Southampton to withdraw, and to send hi» 
communication in in writing, and in the mean 
time to retire out of London, and wait for 
their answer. The House of Commons, in the 
same spirit of hostility and defiance, ordered 
the messengers which had been sent to them 
to come to the bar, like humble petitioners or 
criminals, and make their communication 

The propositions of the king to the houses 
of Parliament were, that they should appoint 
a certain number of commissioners, and he also 
the same number, to meet and confer together, 
in hope of agreeing upon some conditions of 
peace. The houses passed a vote in reply, de- 
claring that they had been doing ail in their 
power to preserve the peace of the kingdom, 
while the king had been interrupting and dis- 
turbing it by his military gatherings, and by 
proclamations, in which they were called trai- 

14— Charles I. 


tors : and that they could enter into no treaty 
with him until he disbanded the armies which 
he had collected, and recalled his proclamations. 

To this the king replied that he had never 
intended to call them traitors ; and that when 
they would recall their declarations and votes 
stigmatizing those who adhered to him as trai- 
tors, he would recall his proclamations. Thus 
messages passed back and forth two or three 
times, each party criminating the other, and 
neither willing to make the concessions which 
the other required. At last all hope of an ac- 
commodation w^as abandoned, and both sides 
prepared for war. 

The nobility and gentry flocked to the king's 
standard. They brought their plate, their jew- 
els, and their money to provide funds. Some 
of them brought their servants. There were 
two companies in the king's guard, one of which 
consisted of gentlemen, and the other of their 
servants. These two companies were always 
kept together. There was the greatest zeal 
and enthusiasm among the upper classes to 
serve the king, and equal zeal and enthusiasm 
among the common people to serve the Parlia- 
ment. The w^ar continued for four years. 
During all this time the armies marched and 
countermarched all over the kingdom, carrying 
ruin and destruction wherever they went, and 
plunging the wdiole country in misery. 


At one of tlio battles which was fought, the 
celebrated John Hampden, the man who would 
not pay his ship money, was slain. He had 
been a very energetic and efficient officer on 
tlie Tarliamentary side, and was much dreaded 
by the forces of the king. At one of the battles 
between Prince Rupert, Charles's nephew, and 
the army of the Parliament, the prince brought 
to the king's camp a large number of prisoners 
which he had t-iken. One pi the prisoners said 
he was confider.t that Hampden was hurt, for 
he saw him riding off the field before the battle 
was over, with his head hanging down, and his 
hands clasping the neck of his horse. They 
heard the next day that he had been wounded 
in the shoulder. Inflammation and fever en- 
sued, and he died a few days afterward in 
great agony. 

This Prince Rupert was a very famous char- 
Acter in all these wars. He was young and ar-t 
dent, and full of courage and enthusiasm. H* 
was always foremost and ready to embark in 
the most daring undertakings. He was tho 
son of the king's sister Elizabeth, who married 
the Elector Palatine, as narrated in a preceding 
chapter. He was famous not only for his mil- 
itary skill and attainments, but for his knowl- 
edge of science, and for his ingenuity in man} 
philosophical arts. There is a mode of engrav% 
ing called mezzotinto, which is somewhat easier 


of execution than the common mode, and pro- 
duces a peculiar effect. Prince Eupert is said 
to have been the inventor of it, though, as is 
the case with almost all other inventions, there 
is a dispute about it. He discovered a mode 
of dropping melted glass into water so as to 
form little pear-shaped globules, with a long 
slender tail. These globules have this remark- 
able property, that if the tip of the tail is bro- 
ken off ever so 'gently, the whole flies into 
atoms with an explosion. These drops of glass 
are often exhibited at the present day, and are 
called Prince Eupert's drops. The prince also 
discovered a very tenacious composition of met- 
als for casting cannon. As artillery is neces- 
sarily very heavy, and very difficult to be trans- 
ported on marches and upon the field of battle, 
it becomes very important to discover such me- 
tallic compounds as have the greatest strength 
and tenacity in resisting the force of an explo- 
sion. Prince Eupert invented such a com- 
pound, which is called by his name. 

There were not only a great many battles 
and fierce encounters between the two great 
parties in this civil war, but there were also, 
at times, temporary cessations of the hostilities, 
and negotiations for peace. But it is very 
hard to make peace between two powers en- 
gaged in civil war. Each considers the other 
as acting the part of rebels and traitors, an4 


there is a difficulty, almost insuperable, in the 
way of even opening negotiations between 
them. Still the people became tired of the war. 
At one time, when the king had made some 
propositions which the Parliament would not 
accept, an immense assemblage of women col- 
lected together, with white ribbons in their 
hats, to go to the House of Commons with a 
petition for peace. When they reached the 
door of the hall their number was five thou- 
sand. They called out, *' Peace ! peace !' 
Give us those traitors that are against peace, 
that we may tear them to pieces." The guards 
who were stationed at the door were ordered to 
fire at this crowd, loading their guns, however, 
only with powder. This, it was thought, 
would frighten them away; but the women 
only laughed at the volley, and returned it 
with si^^ones and brick-bats, and drove the 
guards away. Other troops were then sent for, 
who charged upon the women with their 
swords, and cut them in their faces and hands, 
and thus at length dispersed them. 

During the progress of the war, the queen 
returned from the Continent and joined the 
king. She had some difficulty, hoAvever, and 
encountered some personal danger, in her 
efforts to return to her husband. The vice- 
admiral, who had command of the English 
ships off the coast, received orders to intercept 


her. He watched for her. She contrived, 
however, to elude his vigilance, though there 
were four ships in her convoy. She landed at 
a town called Burlington, or Bridlington, in 
Yorkshire. This town stands in a very pic- 
turesque situation, a little south of the famous 
promontory called Flamborough Head, of which 
there is a beautiful view from the pier of the 

The queen succeeded in landing here. On 
her arrival at the town, she found herself worn 
down with the anxiety and fatigue of the voy- 
age, and she wanted to stop a few days to rest. 
She took up her residence in a house which was 
on the quay, and, of course, near the water. 
The quay, as it is called, in these towns, is a 
street on the margin of the water, with a wall, 
but no houses next the sea. The vice-admiral 
arrived at the town the second night after the 
queen had landed. He was vexed that his 
expected prize had escaped him. He brought 
his ships up near to the town, and began to 
fire toward the house in which the queen was 

This was at five o'clock in the morning. 
The queen and her attendants were in their 
beds, asleep. The reports of the cannon from 
the ships, the terrific whistling of the balls 
through the air, and the crash of the houses 
which the balls struck, aroused the whole vil- 


lage from their slumbers, and threw them into 
consternation. The people soon came to the 
house where the queen was lodging, and begged 
her to fly. They said that the neighboring 
houses were blown to pieces, and that her own 
would soon be destroyed, and she herself would 
be killed. They may, however, have been in- 
fluenced more by a regard to their own safety 
than to hers in these injunctions, as it must 
have been a great object with the villagers to 
effect the immediate removal of a visitor who 
was the means of bringing upon them so terri- 
ble a danger. 

These urgent entreaties of the villagers were 
soon enforced by two cannon-balls, which fell, 
one after another, upon the roof of the house, 
and, crashing their way through the roof and 
the floors, went down, without seeming to re- 
gard the resistance, from the top to the bottom. 
The queen hastily put on her clothes, and went 
forth with her attendants on foot, the balls 
from the ships whistling after them all the 

One of her servants was killed. The rest of 
the fugitives, finding their exposure so great, 
stopped at a sort of trench which they came 
to, at the end of a field, such as is dug com- 
monly, in England, on one side of the hedge, 
to make the barrier more impassable to the 
animals which it is intended to confine. This 


trench, with the embankment formed by the 
(iiivth thrown out of it, on which the hedge 
is usually planted, afforded them protection. 
They sought shelter in it, and remained there 
for two hours, like besiegers in the approaches 
to a town, the balls passing over their heads 
harmlessly, though sometimes covering them 
with the earth which they threw up as they 
bounded by. At length the tide began to 
ebb, and the vice-admiral was in danger oi 
being left aground. He weighed his anchors 
and withdrew, and the queen and her part;y 
were relieved. Such a cannonading of a help- 
less and defenseless woman is a barbarity whicli 
could hardly take place except in a civil war. 

The queen rejoined her husband, and sh( 
rendered him essential service in many ways. 
She had personal influence enough to raise botl 
money and men for his armies, and so con» 
tributed very essentially to the strength of hu 
party. At last she returned to the Continent 
again, and went to Paris, where she was still 
actively employed in promoting his cause. At 
one of the battles in which the king was de- 
feated, the Parliamentary army seized his 
baggage, and found among his papers his cor- 
respondence with the queen. They very ungen- 
erously ordered it to be published, as the letters 
seemed to show a ^^igorous determination on 
the part of the knig not to yield in the contest 

An Incident in the Civil War, 


witlioufc obtaining from the Parliament and its 
adherents full and ample concessions to his 

As time rolled on, the strength of the royal 
party gradually wasted away, while that of 
Parliament seemed to increase, until it became 
evident that the latter would, in the end, ob- 
tain the victory. The king retreated from 
place to place, followed by his foes, and grow- 
ing weaker and more discouraged after every 
conflict. His son, the Prince of Wales, was 
then about fifteen years of age. He sent him 
to the western part of the island, Avith direc- 
tions that, if affairs should still go against him, 
the boy should be taken in time out of the 
country, and join his mother in Paris. The 
danger grew more and more imminent, and 
they who had charge of the young prince sent 
him first to Scilly, and then to Jersey — islands 
in the Channel — whence he made his escape to 
Paris, and joined his mother. Fifteen years 
afterward he returned to London with great 
pomp and parade, and was placed upon the 
throne by universal acclamation. 

At last the king himself, after being driven 
from one place of refuge to another, retreated 
to Oxford and intrenched himself there. Hero 
he spent the winter of 1646 in extreme depres- 
sion and distress. His friends deserted him ; 
his resources were expended ; his hopes were 


extinguished. He sent proposals of peace to 
the Parliament, and offered, himself, to come 
to London, if they would grant him a safe-con- 
duct. In reply, they forbade him to come. 
They would listen to no propositions, and would 
make no terms. The case, they saw, was in their 
own hands, and they determined on uncondi- 
tional submission. They hemmed the king in 
on all sides at his retreat in Oxford, and re- 
duced him to despair. 

In the meantime, the Scots, a year or two 
before this, had raised an army and crossed the 
northern frontier, and entered England. They 
were against monarchy and Episcopacy, but 
they were, in some respects, a separate enemy 
from those against whom the king had been 
contending so long ; and he began to think that 
he had perhaps better fall into their hands than 
into those of his English foes, if he must sub- 
mit to one or to the other. He hesitated for 
some time what course to take ; but at last, 
after receiving representations of the favorable 
feeling which prevailed in regard to him in the 
Scottish army, he concluded to make his escape 
from Oxford and surrender himself to them. 
He accordingly did so, and the civil war was 



The circumstances of King Charles's sur- 
render to^ the Scots were these. He knew 
that he was surrounded by his enemies in 
Oxford, and that they woukl not allow him to 
escape if they could prevent it. He and his 
friends, therefore, formed the following plan to 
elude them. 

Tliey sent word to the commanders of each 
of the several gates of the city, on a certain day, 
that during the ensuing night three men would 
have to pass out on business of the king's, and 
that when the men should appear and give a 
certain signal, they were to be allowed to pass. 
The officer at each gate received this command 
without knowing that a similar one had been 
sent to the others. 

Accordingly, about midnight, the parties of 

men were despatched, and they went out at the 

several gates. The king himself was in one of 

these parties. There were two other persons 

with him. One of these persons was a certain 



Mr. Ashburnham, and the king was disguised 
as his servant. They were all on horseback, 
and the king had a valise upon the horse be- 
hind him, so as to complete his disguise. Thia 
was on the 27th of April. The next day, or 
very soon after, it was known at Oxford that 
his majesty was gone, but no one could tell in 
what direction, for there was no means even of 
deciding by which of the gates he had left the 

The Scotch were, at this time, encamped be- 
fore the town of Newark, which is on the Trent, 
in the heart of England, and about one hun- 
dred and twenty miles north of London* There 
was a magnificent castle at Newark in those 
days, which made the place very strong. The 
town held out for the king ; for, though they 
had been investing it for some time, they had 
not yet succeeded in compelling the governor 
to surrender. The king concluded to proceed 
to Newark and enter the Scottish camp. He 
considered it, or, rather, tried to have it con- 
sidered, that he was coming to join them as 
their monarch. They were going to consider 
it surrendering to them as their prisoner. The 
king himself must have known how it would 
be, but it made his sense of humiliation a little 
less poignant to carry this illusion with him as 
long as it was possible to maintain it. 

As soon as the Parliament found that the 


king had made his escape from Oxford, they 
were alarmed, and on the 4th of May they is- 
sued an order to tliis effect, '^ That what per- 
son soever should harbor and conceal, or should 
know of the harboring or concealing of the 
king's person, and should not immediately re- 
veal it to the speakers of both houses, should be 
proceeded against as a traitor to the Common- 
wealth, and die without mercy." The proc- 
lamation of this opder, however, did not result 
ill arresting the flight of the king. On the day 
after it was issued, he arrived safely art Newark. 

The Scottish general, whose name was Les- 
ley, immediately represented to the king that 
for his own safety it was necessary that they 
should retire toward the northern frontier ; but 
they could not so retire, he said, unless New- 
ark should first surrender. They accordingly 
induced the king to send in orders to the gov- 
ernor of the castle to give up the place. TJie 
Scots took possession of it, and, after having 
garrisoned it, moved with their army toward 
tlie north, the king and General Lesley being 
hi the van. 

They treated the king with great distinction, 
but guarded him very closely, and sent word to 
the Parliament that he was in their possession. 
Tliere ensued long negotiations and much de- 
bate. The question Avas, at first, whether the 
Knglish or Scotch should have the disposal of 


the king's person. The English said that they^ 
and not the Scots, were the party making war 
upon him ; that they had conquered his armies, 
and hemmed him in, and reduced him to the 
necessity of submission ; and that he had been 
taken captive on English soil, and ought, con- 
sequently, to be delivered into the hands of the 
English Parliament. The Scots replied that 
though he had been taken in England, he ' was 
their king as well as the king of England, and 
had made himself their enemy ; and that, as he 
had fallen, into their hands, he ought to remain 
at their disposal. To this the English rejoined, 
that the Scots, in taking him, had not acted on 
their own account, but as the allies, and, as it 
were, the agents of the English, and that they 
ought to consider the king as a captive taken 
for them, and hold him subject to their dis- 
posal. / 

They could not settle the question. In the 
meantime the Scottish army drew back toward 
the frontier, taking the king with them. About 
this time a negotiation sprung up between the 
Parliament and the Scots for the payment of 
the expenses which the Scottish army liad in- 
curred in their campaign. The Scots sent in 
an account amounting to two millions of 
pounds. The English objected to a great 
many of the charges, and offered them two 
hundred thousand pounds. Finally it was set- 


tied that four hundred thousand pounds should 
be paid. This arrangement was made early in 
September. In January the Scots agreed to 
give up the king into the hands of the English 

The world accused the Scots of selling their 
king to his enemies for four hundred thousand 
pounds. The Scots denied that there was any 
connection between the two transactions above 
referred to. They received the money on ac- 
count of their just claims ; and they afterward 
agreed to deliver up the king, because they 
tliought it right and proper so to do. The 
friends of the king, however, were never satis- 
fied that there was not a secret understanding 
between the parties, that the money paid was 
not the price of the king's delivery ; and as 
this delivery resulted in his death, they called 
it the price of blood. 

Charles was at Newcastle when they came 
to this decision. His mind had been more at 
ease since his surrender to the Scots, and he 
was accustomed to amuse himself and while 
away the time of his captivity by various games. 
He was playing chess when the intelligence 
was brought to him that he was to be delivered 
up to tlie English Parliament. It was com- 
municated to him in a letter. He read it, and 
then went on with his game, and none of those 
around him could perceive by his air and man- 


ner that the intelligence which the letter con- 
tained was anything extraordinary. Perhaps 
he was not aware of the magnitude of the 
change in his condition and prospects which 
the communication announced. 

There was at this time, at a town called 
Holmby or Holdenby, in Northamptonshire, a 
beautiful palace which was known by the name 
of Holmby House. King Charles's mother had 
purchased this palace for him when he was the 
Duke of York, in the early part of his life, 
while his father, King James, was on the 
throne, and his older brother was the heir ap- 
parent. It was a very stately and beautiful 
edifice. The house was fitted up in a very 
handsome manner, and all suitable accommo- • 
dations provided for the king's reception. He 
had many attendants, and every desirable con- 
venience and luxury of living ; but, though the 
war was over, there was still kept up between 
the king and his enemies a petty contest about 
forms and punctilios, which resulted from the 
spirit of intolerance which characterized the 
age. The king wanted his own Episcopal chap- 
lains. The Parliament would not consent to 
this, but sent him two Presbyterian chaplains. . 
The king would not allow them to say grace at 
the table, but performed this duty himself; 
and on the Sabbath, when they preacljed in his 
chapel, he never would attend. 


One singular instance of this sort of bigotry, 
and of the king's presence of mind under the 
action of it, took place while the king was at 
Newcastle. They took liim one day to the 
chapel in the castle to he^ir a Scotch Presby- 
terian who was preaching to the garrison. The 
Scotcliman preached a long discourse pointed 
expressly at tlie king. Tliose preachers prided 
themselves on the fearlessness with which, 
on such occasions, they discharged what they 
called their duty. To cap the climax of his 
faithfulness, tlie preacher gave out, at the 
close of the sermon, the hymn, thus: "We 
will sing the fifty-first Psalm : 

*' * Why dost thou, tyrant, boast thyself, 
Tliy wioked works to praise ? ' " 

As the congregation were about to com- 
mence the singing, the king cast his eye along 
the page, and found in the fifty-sixth hymn 
one which he tliought would be more appro- 
priate, lie rose, and said, in a very audible 
manner, " We will sing the Mty-sixth Psalm : 

*' * Have mercy, Lord, on me I pray, 
For men would me devour.' " 

The congregation, moved by a sudden im- 
pulse of religious generosity extremely unusual 
in those days, immediately sang the psalm 
which the king had chosen. 


While he was at ITolmby the king used 
sometimes to go, escorted by a guard, to cer- 
tain neighboring villages where there were 
bowling-greens. One day, while he was going 
on one of these excursions, a man, in the dress 
of a laborer, appeared standing on a bridge as 
he passed, and handed him a packet. The 
commissioners who had charge of Charles — for 
some of them always attended him on these 
excursions — seized the man. The packet was 
from the queen. The king told the commis- 
sioners that the letter was only to ask him 
some question about the disposal of his son, 
the young prince, Tfho was then with her in 
Paris. They seemed satisfied, but they sent 
the disguised messenger to London, and the 
Parliament committed him to prison, and sent 
down word to dismiss all Charles's own attend- 
ants, and to keep him thenceforth in more 
strict confinement. 

In the mean time, the Parliament, having 
finished the war, were ready to disband the 
army. But the army did not want to be dis- 
banded. They would not be disbanded. The 
officers knew very well th^at if their troops were 
dismissed, and they were to return to their 
homes as private citizens, all their importance 
would be gone. There followed long debates 
and negotiations between the army and the 
Parliament, which ended, at last, in an open 

f'karle* I./ac«p. 302 

Oliver Cromwell. 


rupture. It is almost always so at the end of 
a revolution. The military power is found to 
have become too strong for the civil institu- 
tions of the country to control it. 

Oliver Cromwell, who afterward became so 
distinguished in the days of the Common- 
wealth, was at this time becoming the most influ- 
ential leader of the army. He was not the com- 
mander-in-chief in form, but he was the great 
planner and manager in fact. He was a man 
of great sternness and energy of character, and 
was always ready for the most prompt and dar- 
ing action. He conceived the design of seizing 
the king's person at Holmby, so as to take him 
away from the control of the Parliament, and 
transfer him to that of the army. This plan 
was executed on the 4th of June, about two 
months after the king had been taken to 
Holmby House. The abduction was effected 
in the following manner. 

Cromwell detached a strong party of choice 
troops, under the command of an officer by the 
name of Joyce, to carry the plan into effect. 
These troops were all horsemen, so that their 
movements could be made with the greatest 
celerity. They arrived at Holmby House at 
midnight. The cornet, for that w^as the mili- 
tary title by which Joyce w^as designated, drew 
up his horsemen about the palace, and de- 
manded entrance Before his coftipany ar* 


rived, however, there had been an alarm thai 
they were coming, and the guards liad been 
doubled. The officers in command asked the 
cornet what was his name and business. He 
replied that he was Cornet Joyce, and that hi^ 
business was to speak to the king. They asked 
him by whom he was sent, and he replied thai 
he was sent by himself, and that he must and 
would see the king. They then commanded 
their soldiers to stand by their arms, and be 
ready to fire when the word should be given. 
They, however, perceived that Joyce and hia 
force were a detachment from the army to 
which they themselves belonged, and conclud- 
ing to receive them as brothers, they opened 
the gates and let them in. 

The cornet stationed sentinels at the doora 
of those apartments of the castle which were 
occupied by the Scotch commissioners who 
had the king in charge, and then went himself 
directly to the king's chamber. He had a 
pistol loaded and cocked in liis hand. He 
knocked at the door. There were four grooms 
in waiting : they rebuked him for making such 
a disturbance at that time of tlie night, and 
told him that he should wait until the morn- 
ing if he had any communication to make to 
the king. 

The cornet would not accede to this proposi- 
tion, but knocked violently at the door, tlie 

Arrest of King Charles 1. 


servants being deterred from interfering by 
dread of the loaded pistol, and by the air and 
manner of their visitor, which told them very 
plainly that he was not to be trifled with. 
The king finally heard the disturbance, and, 
on learning the cause, sent out word that Joyce 
must go away and wait till morning, for ho 
would not get up to see him at that hour. 
The cornet, as one of the historians of the 
time expresses it, *' huffed and retired." The 
next morning he had an interview with the king. 
AVhen he was introduced to the king's apart- 
ment in the morning, the king said that he 
wished to have the Scotch commissioners pres- 
ent at the interview. Joyce replied that the 
commissioners had notliing to do now but to 
return to tlie Parliament at London. The 
king then said that he wished to see his in- 
structions. The cornet replied that he would 
show them to him, and he sent out to order 
his horsemen to parade in the inner court of 
the palace, where the king could see them from 
his windows ; and then, pointing them out to 
the king, he said, "These, sir, are my instruc- 
tions." The king, who in all the trials and 
troubles of his life of excitement and danger, 
took everything quietly and calmly, looked at 
tlie men attentively. They were fine troops, 
well mounted and armed. He then turned to 
the cornet, and said, with a smile, that "his 


instructions were in fair characters, and could 
be read without spelling." The cornet then 
said that his orders were to take the king away 
with him. The king declined going, unless 
the commissioners went too. The cornet 
made no objection, saying that the commis- 
sioners might do as they pleased about accom- 
panying him, but that he himself must go. 

The party set off from Holmby and traveled 
two days, stopping at night at the houses of 
friends to their cause. They reached Cam- 
bridge, where the leading officers of the army 
received the king, rendering him every possible 
mark of deference and respect. From Cam- 
bridge he was conducted by the leadcts of the 
army from town to town, remaining sometimes 
several days at a place. He was attended by 
a strong guard, and was treated everywhere 
with the utmost consideration and honor. He 
was allowed some little liberty, in riding out 
and in amusements, but every precaution was 
taken to prevent the possibility of an escape. 

The people collected everywhere into the 
places through which he had to pass, and his 
presence-chamber was constantly thronged. 
This was not altogether on account of their re- 
spect and veneration for him as king, but it 
arose partly from a very singular cause. There 
is a certain disease called the scrofula, which 
in former times had the name of the King's 


Evil. It is a very unmanageable and obstinate 
disorder, resisting all ordinary modes of treat- 
ment ; but in the days of King Charles, it was 
universally believed by the common people of 
England, that if a king touched a patient 
afflicted with this disease, he would recover. 
This was the reason why it was called the king's 
evil. It was the evil that kings only could 
cure. Now, as kings seldom traveled much 
about their dominions, whenever one did make 
such a journey, the people embraced the oppor- 
tunity to bring all the cases which could pos- 
sibly be considered as scrofula to the line of his 
route, in order that he might touch the per- 
sons afflicted and heal them. 

In the course of the summer the king was 
conducted to Hampton Court, a beautiful pal- 
ace on the Thames, a short distance above Lon- 
don. Here he remained for some time. He 
had an interview here with two of his children. 
The oldest son was still in France. The two 
whom he saw here were the Duke of Glouces- 
ter and the Princess Elizabeth. He found 
that they were under the care of a nobleman 
of high rank, and that they were treated with 
great consideration. Charles was extremely 
gratified and pleased with seeing these mem- 
bers of his family again, after so long a separa- 
tion. His feelings of domestic affection were 
very strong. 


The king remained at Hampton Court two 
or three months. During this time, London, 
and all the region about it, was kept in a con- 
tinual state of excitement by the contentions 
of the army and Parliament, and the endless 
negotiations which they attempted with each 
other and with the king. During all this time 
the king was in a sort of elegant and honorable 
imprisonment in his palace at Hampton Court ; 
but he found the restraints to which he was 
subjected, and the harassing cares which the 
contest between these two great powers brought 
upon him, so great, that he determined to make 
his escape from the thraldom which bound 
him. He yery probably thought that he could 
again raise his standard, and collect an army 
to fight in his cause. Or perhaps he thought 
of making his escape from the country alto- 
gether. It is not improbable that he was not 
decided himself which of these plans to pursue, 
but left the question to be determined by the 
circumstances in which he should find himself 
when he had regained his freedom. 

At any rate, he made his escape. One even- 
ing, about ten o'clock, attendants came into 
his room at Hampton Court, and found that he 
had gone. There were some letters upon the 
table which he had left, directed to the Parlia- 
ment, to the general of the army, and to the 
officer who had guarded him at Hanipton Co*^'n, 


The king had left the palace an hour or two 
before. He passed out at the private door, 
which admitted him to a park connected with 
the palace. lie went through the park by a 
walk which led down to the water, where there 
was a boat ready for him. He crossed the 
river in the boat, and on the opposite shore he 
found several officers and some horses ready to 
receive him. He mounted one of the horses, 
and the party rode rapidly away. 

They traveled all night, and arrived, toward 
morning, at the residence of a countess on 
whose attachment to him and fidelity he placed 
great reliance. The countess concealed him 
in her house, though it was understood by all 
concerned that this was only a temporary place 
of refuge. He could not long be concealed 
here, and her residence was not provided with 
any means of defense ; so that, immediately on 
their arrival at the countesses, the king and 
the few friends who were with him began to 
concert plans for a more secure retreat. 

The house of the countess was on the south- 
ern coast of England, near the Isle of Wight. 
There was a famous castle in those days upon 
this island, near the center of it, called Caris- 
brooke Castle. The ruins of it, which are very 
extensive, still remain. This castle was under 
the charge of Colonel Hammond, who was at 
that time governor of the island. Colonel 



Hammond was a near relative of one of King 
Charles's chaplains, and the king thought it 
probable that he would espouse his cause. He 
accordingly sent two of the gentlemen who had 
accompanied him to the Isle of Wight to see 
Colonel Hammond, and inquire of lum whether 
he would receive and protect the king if he 
Vfould come to him. But he charged them 
not to let Hammond know where he was, un- 
less he would first solemnly promise to protect 
him, and not to subject him to any restraint. 

The messengers went, and, to the king's 
surprise, brought back Hammond with them. 
Tlie king asked them whether tliey had got his 
written promise to protect him. They an- 
swered no, but tliat they could depend upon 
him as a man of honor. The king was alarmed. 
**Then you have betrayed me," said he, ^^and 
I am his prisoner." The messengers were then, 
in their turn, alarmed at having thus disap- 
pointed and displeased the king, and they 
offered to kill Hammond on the spot, and to 
provide some other means of securing the king's 
safety. The king, however, would not sane- 
tion any such proceeding, but put himself un- 
der Hammond's charge, and was conveyed to 
Carisbrooke Castle. He was received with 
every mark of respect, but was very carefully 
guarded. It was about the middle of Novem- 
ber that these events took place. 


Hammond notified the Parliament that 
King Charles was in his hands, and sent for 
directions from them as to what he should do. 
Parliament required that he should be care- 
fully guarded, and they appropriated £5000 
for the expenses of his support. The king 
remained in this confinment more than a year, 
while the Parliament and the army were strug- 
gling for the mastery of the kingdom. 

He spent his time, during this long period, 
in various pursuits calculated to beguile the 
weary days, and he sometimes planned schemes 
for escape. There were also a great many 
messages and negotiations going between the 
king and the Parliament, which resulted in 
nothing but to make the broach between them 
wider and wider. Sometimes the king was 
silent and depressed. At other times he seemed 
in his usual spirits. He read series books 
a great deal, and wrote. There is a famous 
book, which was found in manuscript after his 
death among his papers, in his handwriting, 
which it is supposed he wrote at this time. Ho 
was allowed to take walks upon the castle wall, 
which was very extensive, and he had some 
other amusements which served to occupy his 
leisure time. He found his confinement, how- 
ever, in spite of all these mitigations, weari- 
some and hard to boar. 

There were some schemes attempted to en- 


able him to regain his liberty. There was one 
very desperate attempt. It seems that Ham- 
mond, suspecting that the king was plotting 
an escape, dismissed the king's own servants 
and put others in their places — persons in 
whom he supposed he could more implicitly 
rely. One of these men, whose name was 
Burley, was exasperated at being thus dis- 
missed. He went through the town of Caris- 
brooke, beating a drum, and calling upon the 
people to rise and rescue their sovereign from 
his captivity. The governor of the castle, 
hearing of this, sent out a small body of men, 
arrested Burley, and hanged and quartered 
him. The king was made a close prisoner im- 
mediately after this attempt. 

Notwithstanding this, another attempt was 
soon made by the king himself, which came 
much nearer succeeding. There was a man 
by the name of Osborne, whom Hammond em- 
ployed as a personal attendant upon the king. 
He was what was called gentleman usher. 
The king succeeded in gaining this person's 
favor so much by his affability and his general 
demeanor, that one day he put a little paper 
into one of the king's gloves, which it was a 
part of his office to hold on certain occasions, 
and on this paper he had written that he was 
at the king's service. At first Charles was 
afraid that this offer was only a treacherous 


one ; but at length he confided in him. In the 
meantime there was a certain man by the 
name of Rolf in the garrison, wlio conceived 
the design of enticing the king away from tlie 
castle on the promise of promoting his escape, 
and then murdering him. Rolf thought that 
this plan would please the Parliament, and that 
he himself, and those who should aid him in 
the enterprise, would be rewarded. He pro- 
posed this scheme to Osborne, and asked him 
to join in the execution of it. 

Osborne made the whole plan known to the 
king. The king, on reflection, said to Osborne, 
** Very well ; continue in communication with 
Rolf, and help him mature his plan. Let him 
thus aid in getting me out of the castle, and 
we will make such arrangements as to pre- 
vent the assassination." Osborne did so. He 
also gained over some other soldiers who were 
employed as sentinels near the place of escape. 
Osborne and Rolf furnished the king with a, 
saw and a file, by means of which he sawed off 
some iron bars which guarded one of his win- 
dows. They were then, on a certain night, to 
be ready with a few attendants on the outside 
to receive the king as he descended, and con- 
vey him away. 

In the mean time Rolf and Osborne had each 
obtained a number of confederates, those of 
the former supposing that the plan waa to 


assassinate the king, while those of the latter 
understood that the plan was to assist him in 
escaping from captivity. Some expressions 
which were dropped by one of this latter class 
alarmed Rolf, and led him to suspect some 
treachery. He accordingly took the precau- 
tion to provide a number of armed men, and to 
have them ready at the window, so that he 
should be sure to be strong enough to secure 
the king immediately on his descent from the 
window. When the time came for the escape, 
the king, before getting out, looked below, and, 
seeing so many armed men, knew at once that 
Rolf had discovered their designs, and refused 
to descend. He quickly returned to his bed. 
The next day the bars were found filed in two, 
and the king was made a closer prisoner than 

Some months after this, some commissioners 
from Parliament went to see the king, and they 
found liim in a most wretched condition. His 
beard was grown, his dress was neglected, his 
health was gone, his hair was gray, and, though 
only forty-eight years of age, he appeared as 
decrepit and infirm as a man of seventy. In 
fact, he was in a state of misery and despair. 
Even the enemies who came to visit him, 
though usually stern and hard-hearted enough 
to withstand any impressions, were extrem.ely 
affected at the sight. 




As soon as tlie army party, with Oliver Crom- 
well at their head, had obtained complete 
ascendency, they took immediate measures for 
proceeding vigorously against the king. They 
seized him at Carisbrooke Castle, and took him 
to Hurst Castle, which was a gloomy fortress 
in the neighborhood of Carisbrooke. Hurst 
Castle was in a very extraordinary situation. 
There is a long point extending from the main 
land toward the Isle of Wight, opposite to the 
eastern end of it. Tliis point is very narrow, 
but is nearly two miles long. The castle was 
built at the extremity. It consisted of one 
great round tower, defended by walls and bas- 
tions. It stood lonely and desolate, surrounded 
by the sea, except the long and narrow neck 
which connected it with the distant shore. 
Of course, though comfortless and solitary, it 
was a place of much greater security than 

The circumstances of the king's removal to 



this new place of confinement were as follows : 
In some of his many negotiations with the Par- 
liament while at Carisbrooke he had bound 
himself, on certain conditions, not to attempt 
to escape from that place. His friends, how- 
ever, when they heard that the army were com- 
ing again to take him away, concluded that he 
ought to lose no time in making his escape out 
of the country. They proposed the plan to 
the king. He made two objections to it. He 
thought, in the first place, that the attempt 
would be very likely to fail ; and that, if it did 
fail, it would exasperate his enemies, and make 
his confinement more rigorous, and his proba- 
ble danger more imminent than ever. He said 
that, in the second place, he had promised the 
Parliament that he would not attempt to es- 
cape, and that he could not break his word. 

The three friends were silent when they 
heard the king speak these words. After a 
pause, the leader of them, Colonel Cook, said, 
" Suppose I were to tell your majesty that the 
army have a plan for seizing you immediately, 
and that they will be upon you very soon 
unless you escape. Suppose I tell you that we 
have made all the preparations necessary — that 
we have horses all ready here, concealed in a 
pent-house — that we have a vessel at the Cows * 

* There were two points or headlands, on opposite 
sides of an inlet from the sea, on the northern side 


waiting for us — that we are all prepared to 
jittend you, and eager to engage in the enter- 
prise — the darkness of the night favoring our 
plan, and rendering it almost certain of success. 
Now," added he, "these suppositions express 
the real state of the case, and the only question 
is what your majesty will resolve to do." 

The king paused. He was distressed with 
perplexity and doubt. At length he said, 
•* They have promised me, and I have promised 
them, and I will riot break the promise first." 
'• Your majesty means by they ancl them, the 
Parliament, I suppose ? " '' Yes, I do." " But 
the scene is not changed. The Parliament 
liave no longer any power to protect you. The 
danger is imminent, and the circumstances 
absolve your majesty from all obligation." 

But the king could not be moved. lie said, 
come what may, he would not do anything 
that looked like a breaking of his word, lie 
would dismiss the subject and go to bed, and 
enjoy his rest as long as he could. His friends 
told him that they feared it would not be long. 
They seemed very much agitated and dis- 

of the Isle of Wight, whicli in ancient times received 
the name of Cows. They were called the East Cow 
and the West Cow. The harbor between them 
formed a safe and excellent harbor. The name is 
now spelled Cowes, and the port is, at the present 
day, of great commercial importance. 


tressed. The king asked them why they were so 
much troubled. They said it was to think of 
the extreme danger in which his majesty was 
lying, and his unwillingness to do anything to 
avert it. ^The king replied, that if the danger 
were tenfold more than it was, he would not 
break his word to avert it. 

The fears of the king's friends were soon re- 
alized. The next morning, at break of day, he 
was awakened by a loud knocking at his door. 
,He sent one of his attendants to inquire what 
it meant. Jt was a party of soldiers come to 
take him away. They would give him no in- 
formation in respect to their plans, but required 
him to dress himself immediately and go with 
tlicni. They mounted horses at the gate of the 
castle. The king was very earnest to have his 
friends accompany him. They allowed one of 
them, the Duke of Richmond, to go with him 
a little way, and then told him he must return. 
The Duke bade his master a very sad and sor- 
rowful farewell, and left him to g'o on alone. 

The escort which were conducting him took 
him to Hurst Castle. The Parliament passed 
a vote condemning this proceeding, but it was 
too late. The army concentrated their forces 
about London, took possession of the avenues 
to the house of Parliament, and excluded all 
those members who were opposed to them. 
The remnant of the Parliament which was left 


immediately took measures for bringing the 
king to trial. 

The House of Commons did not dare to trust 
the trial of the king to the Peers, according to 
the provisions of tlie English Constitution, and 
so they passed an ordinance for attainting him 
of higli treason, and for appointing commission' 
ers, themselves, to try him. Of course, in ap- 
pointing these commissioners, they would name 
such men as they were sure wouli be predis 
posed to condemn him. The Peers rejected 
tliis ordinance, and adjourned for nearly a fort- 
night, hoping thus to arrest any further pro- 
ceedings. The Commons immediately voted 
hat the action of the Peers was not necessary, 
and that they would go forwari] tliemselves. 
They then appointed the commissioners, and 
ordered the trial to proceed. 

Everything connected with the trial was 
conducted with great state and parade. The 
number of commissioners constituting the court 
was one hundred and thirty-three, though only 
a little more than half that number attended 
the trial. The king had been removed from 
ITurst Castle to Windsor Castle, and he was 
now brought into the city, and lodged in a 
liouse near to Westminster Hall, so as to be at 
hand. On the appointed day the court assem- 
bled ; the vast hall and all the avenues to it 
were thronged. The whole civilized world 


looked on, in fact, in astonishment at the al' 
most unprecedented spectacle of a king tried 
for his life by an assembly of his subjects. 

The first Inisiness after the opening of the 
court was to call the roll of the commissioners, 
that each one might answer to his name. The 
name of tlie general of the army, Fairfax, who 
was one of the number, was the second upon 
the list. When his name was called there was 
no answer. It was called again. A voice from 
one of the ga/'eries replied, '* Ile^ias too much 
wit to be here. ' This produced some disorder, 
and the officers called out to know who an- 
swered in that manner, but there was no reply. 
Afterwards, when the impeachment was read, 
the phrase occurred, ^^ Of all the people of Eng- 
land," when the same voice rejoined, "No, 
not the half of them." The officers then or- 
dered a soldier to fire into the seat from which 
these interruptions came. This com.mand was 
not obeyed, but they found, on investigating 
the case, that the person who had answered 
thus was Fairfax's wife, and they immediately 
removed her from the hall. 

When the court was fully organized, they 
commanded the sergeant-at-arms to bring in the 
prisoner. Tlie king was accordingly brouglit 
in, and conducted to a chair covered with crim- 
son velvet, which had been placed for him at 
the bar. The judges remained in their seats. 


with their heads covered, while he entered, and 
the king took his seat, keeping his head cov- 
ered too. lie took a calm and deliberate survey 
ut' the scene, looking around upon the judges, 
and upon the armed guards by which he was 
fiivironed, with a stern and unchanging coun- 
tenance. At length silence was proclaimed, 
and the president rose to introduce the pro- 

He addressed the king. He said that the 
Commons of England, deeply sensible of the 
calamities which had been brought upon Eng- 
land by the civil war, and of the inno nt 
blood which had been shed, and convinced that 
he, the king, had been the guilty cause of it, 
were now determined to make inquisition for 
this blood, and to bring him to trial and judg- 
ment ; that they had, for this purpose, organized 
this court, and that he should now hear the 
charge brought against him, which they would 
proceed to try. 

An officer then arose to read the charge. 
The king made a gesture for him to be silent. 
He, however, persisted in his reading, although 
the king once or twice attempted to interrupt 
him. The president, too, ordered him to pro- 
ceed. The charge recited the evils and calam- 
ities which had resulted from the war, and con- 
ciuded by saying that *'' the said Charles Stu- 
art is and has been the occasioner, autlior, and 


continuer of the said unnatural, cruel, and 
bloody wars, and is therein guilty of all the 
treasons, murders, rapines, burnings, spoils, 
desolations, damages, and mischiefs to this 
nation acted and committed in the said wars, 
or occasioned thereby." 

The president then sharply rebuked the king 
for his interruptions to the proceedings, and 
asked him what answer he had to make to the 
impeachment. The king replied by demand- 
ing by what authority they pretended to call 
him to account for his conduct. He told them 
that he was their king, and they his subjects ; 
that they were not even the Parliament, and 
that they had no authority from any true Par- 
liament to sit as a court to try him ; that he 
would not betray his own dignity and righto by 
making any answer at all to any charges they 
might bring against him, for that would be an 
acknowledgment of their authority ; but he was 
convinced that there was not one of them who 
did not in his heart believe that he was wholly 
innocent of the charges which they had brought 
against him. 

These proceedings occupied the first day. 
The king was then sent back to his place of 
confinement, and the court adjourned. The 
next day, when called upon to plead to the im- 
peachment, the king only insisted the more 
strenuously in denying the authority of the 


court, and in stating his reasons for so denying 
it. The court were determined not to hear 
what he had to say on this point, and the pres- 
ident continually interrupted him ; while he, 
in his turn, continually interrupted the presi- 
dent too. It was a struggle and a dispute, not 
a trial. At last, on the fourth day, something 
like testimony was produced to prove that the 
king had been in arms against the forces of the 
Parliament. On the fifth and sixth days, the 
judges sat in private to come to their decision ; 
and on the day following, which was Saturday, 
January 27th, they called the king again be- 
fore them, and opened the doors to admit the 
great assembly of spectators, that the decision 
might be announced. 

There followed another scene of mutual in- 
terruptions and disorder. The king insisted 
on longer delay. He had not said what he 
wished to say in his defense. The president 
told him it was now too late ; that he had con- 
sumed the time allotted to him in making ob- 
jections to the jurisdiction of the court, and 
now it was too late for his defense. The clerk 
then read the sentence, which ended thus : 
*' For all which treasons and crimes this court 
doth adjudge that he, the said Charles Stuart, 
is a tyrant, traitor, murderer, and public 
enemy, and shall be put to deatli by the sever- 
ing of his head from his body." When the 


clerk had finished the reading, the presi ent 
rose, and said deliberately and solemnly, 

** The sentence now read and published is 
the act, sentence, judgment, and resolution of 
the whole court." 

And the whole court rose to express their 

The king then said to the president, "Will 
you hear me a word, sir ? " 

President. *' Sir, you are not to be heard 
after the sentence." 

King. ^' Am I not, sir ? " 

President. '' No, sir. Guards, withdraw 
the prisoner ! " 

King. "■ I may speak after sentence by your 
favor, sir. Hold — I say, sir — by your favor, 

sir — If I am not permitted to speak " The 

other parts of his broken attempts to speak 
were lost in the tumult, and noise. He was 
taken out of the hall. 

One would have supposed that all who wit- 
nessed these dreadful proceedings, and who 
now saw one who had been so lately the sover- 
eign of a mighty empire standing friendless and 
alone on the brink of destruction, would have 
relented at last, and would have found their 
hearts yieiding to emotions of pity. But it 
seems not to have been so. The animosities 
engendered by political strife are merciless, 
ftud the crowd through which the king had to 


pass as he went from the hall scoffed and de- 
rided liim. They blew the smoke of their 
tobacco in his face, and threw their pipes at 
him. Some proceeded to worse indignities 
than these, but the king bore all with quiet- 
ness and resignation. 

The king was sentenced on Saturday. On 
tlie evening of that day he sent a request that 
the Bisliop of London might be allowed to as- 
sist at his devotions, and that his children 
might be permitted to see him before he was 
to die. There were two of his children then 
in England, his youngest son and a daughter. 
The other two sons had escaped to the Conti- 
nent. The government granted both these re- 
quests. By asking for the services of an Epis- 
copal clergyman, Charles signified his firm de- 
termination to adhere to the very last hour of 
Ills life to the religious principles which he had 
been struggling for so long. It is somewhat 
surprising tliat the government were willing to 
conjply with the request. 

It was, however, complied with, and Charles 
u as taken from the palace of Whitehall, wliieli 
is in Westminster, to the palace of St. James, 
not very far distant. lie was escorted by a 
guard through the streets. At St. James's 
til ere was a small chapel where the king at- 
tended divine service. The Bishop of London 
preached a sermon on the future judgment, in 



which he administered comfort to the mind of 
the unhappy prisoner, so far as the sad case al- 
lowed of any comfort, by the thought that all 
human judgments would be reviewed, and all 
wrong made right at the great day. After the 
service the king spent the remainder of the 
day in retirement and private devotion. 

During the afternoon of the day several of 
his most trusty friends among the nobility 
called to see him, but he declined to grant 
them admission. He said that his time was 
short and precious, and that he wished to im- 
prove it to the utmost in preparation for the 
great change which awaited him. He hoped, 
therefore, that his friends would not be dis- 
pleased if he declined seeing any persons be- 
sides his children. It would do no good for 
them to be admitted. All that they could do 
for him now was to pray for him. 

The next day the children, were brought to 
him in the room where he was confined. The 
daughter, who was called the Lady Elizabeth, 
was the oldest. He directed her to tell her 
brother James, who was the second son, and 
now absent with Charles on the Continent, 
that he must now, from the time of his 
father's death, no longer look upon Charles 
as merely his older brother, but as his sov- 
ereign, and obey him as such ; and he re- 
quested her to charge them both, from him, 


to lore each other, and to forgive their father's 

'* You will not forget this, my dear child, 
will you ? " added the king. The Lady Eliza- 
beth was still very young. 

**No," said she, '*! will never forget it as 
long as I live." 

lie then charged her with a message to her 
mother, the queen, who was also on the Conti- 
nent. " Tell her," said he '' that I have loved 
luT faithfully all my life, and that my tender 
regard for her will not cease till I cease to 

Poor Elizabeth was sadly grieved at this 
parting interview. The king tried to comfort 
her. *' You must not be so afflicted for me," 
he said. " It will be a very glorious death that 
I shall die. I die for the laws and liberties of 
this land, and for maintaining the Protest^.nt 
religion. I have forgiven all my enemies, and 
I hope that God will forgive them." 

The little son was, by title, the Duke of 
Gloucester. lie took him on his knees, and 
said in substance, *^ My dear boy, they are 
going to cut off your father's head." The 
child looked up into his father's face very ear- 
nestly, not comprehending so strange an as- 

"They are going to cut off my head," re- 
peated the king, '*aud perhaps they will want 


to make you a king ; but you must not "be 
king as long as your brothers Charles and 
James live ; for if you do, very likely they will, 
some time or other, cut off your head." The 
child said, with a very determined air, that 
then they should never make him king as long 
as he lived. The king then gave his children 
some other parting messages for several of his 
nearest relatives and friends, and they were 
taken away. 

In cases of capital punishment, in England 
and America, there must be, after the sentence 
is pronounced, written authority to the sheriff, 
or other proper officer, to proceed to the execu- 
tion of it. This is called the warrant, and is 
usually to be signed by the chief magistrate of 
the state. In England the sovereign always 
signs the warrant of execution ; but in the case 
of the execution of the sovereign himself, which 
was a case entirely unprecedented, the authori- 
tios were at first a little at a loss to know what 
to do. The commissioners who had judged the 
king concluded finally to sign it themselves. 
It was expressed substantially as follows : 

** At the High Court of Justice for the try- 
ing and judging of Charles Stuart, king of 
England, January 29th, 1648 : 

** Whereas Charles Stuart, king of England, 
ha? been convicted, attainted, and condemned 


of high treason, and sentence was pronounced 
igainst him by this court, to be put to death 
by the severance of his head from his body, of 
which sentence execution yet remainetli to be 
done ; these are, therefore, now to will and re- 
quire you to see the said sentence executed in 
the open street before Whitehall, upon the 
morrow, being the thirtieth day of this instant 
month of January, between the hours of ten in 
the morning and five in the afternoon of the 
said day, with full effect ; and for so doing this 
shall be your sufficient warrant." 

Fifty-nine of the judges signed this warrant, 
and then it was sent to the persons appointed 
to carry the sentence into execution. 

That night the kii.g slept pretty well for 
about four hours, though during th evening 
before he could hear in his p«, tment the noiso 
of tlie workmen building the pla fori or scaf- 
fold as it was commonly c lied, n which the 
execution was to take place. He awoke, how- 
ever, long before day. He called to an attend- 
ant who lay by his bedside, and requested him 
to get up. ** I will rise myself," said he, *' for 
I have a great work to do to-day." He then 
requested that they would furnish him with 
the best dress, and an extra supply of under 
clotliing, because it was a cold morning. He 
particularly wished to be well guarded from 


the cold, lest it should cause him to shiver, and 
they would suppose that he was trembling from 

^^I have no fear," said he. *^ Death is not 
terrible to me. I bless God that I am prepared." 

The king had made arrangements for divine 
service in his room early in the morning, to be 
conducted by the Bishop of London. The 
b shop cama in at the time appointed and read 
the prayers. He albO read, in the course of the 
service, the t went; -ninth chapter of Matthew, 
which narrates the closing scenes of our Sav- 
iour's life. This was, in fact, the regular 
lesson for the day, according to the Episcopal 
ritual, which assigns certain portions of Scrip- 
ture to every day of the year. The king sup- 
posed that the bishop had purposely selected this 
passage, and he thanked him for it, as he said 
it seemed to him very appropriate to the occa- 
sion. " May it please your majesty," said the 
bishop, *' it is the proper lesson for the day." 
The king was much affected at learning this 
fact, as he considered it a special providence, 
indicating that he was prepared to die, and 
that he should be sustained in the final agony. 

About ten o'clock. Colonel Hacker, who was 
the first one named in the warrant of execu- 
tion of the three persons to whom the warrant 
was addressed, knocked gently at the king's 
chamber door. No answer was returned. Pres- 


ently he knocked again. Tlie king asked his 
attendant to go to the door. He went, and 
asked Colonel Hacker why he knocked. He 
replied thq,t he wished to see the king. 

''Let him come in," said the king. 

The officer entered, hnt with great embar- 
rassment and trepidation. He felt that he had 
a most awful duty to perform. He informed 
the king that it was time to proceed to White- 
hall, though he could have some time there for 
rest. *' Very well," said the king ; *' go on ; I 
will follow." The king then took the bishop's 
arm, and they went along together. 

They found, as they issued from the palace 
of St. James into the park through which their 
way led to Whitehall, that lines of soldiers had 
been drawn up. The king, with the bishop on 
one side, and the attendant before referred to, 
whose name was Herbert, on the other, both 
uncovered, walked between these lines of 
guards. The king walked on very fast, so that 
the others scarcely kept pace with him. When 
he arrived at Whitehall he spent some further 
time in devotion with the bishop, and then, at 
noon, he ate a little bread and drank some 
light wine. Soon after this, Colonel Hacker, 
the officer, came to the door and let them know 
that the hour had arrived. 

The bishop and Hacker melted into tears as 
they bade their master farewell. The king 


directed the door to be opened, and requested, 
the officer to go on, saying that he would follow. 
They went through a large hall, called the 
banqueting hall, to a window in front, through 
which a passage had been made for the king to 
his scaffold, which was built up in the street 
before the palace. As the king passed out 
through the window, he perceived that a vast 
throng of spectators had assembled in the 
streets to witness the spectacle. He had ex- 
pected this, and had intended to address them. 
But he found that this was impossible, as the 
space all around the scaffold was occupied with 
troops of horse and bodies of soldiers, so as to 
keep the populace at so great a distance that 
they could not hear his voice. He, however, 
made his speech, addressing it particularly to 
one or two persons who were near, knowing 
that they would put the substance of it on 
record, and thus make it known to all mankind. 
There was then some further conversation 
about the preparations for the final blow, the' 
adjustment of the dress, the hair, etc., in 
which the king took an active part with great 
composure. He then kneeled down and laid 
his head upon the block. 

The executioner, who wore a mask that he 
might not be known, began to adjust the hair 
of the prisoner by putting it up under his cap, 
when the king, supposing that he was going to 

CA^rtM I./IK6P. :ui 

B:^©^!!^©© of King Ch^riea i« 


strike, hastily told liim to wait for tlie sign. 
Tlie executioner said that he would. The king 
spent a few minutes in prayer, and then 
stretched out his liands, which was the sign 
which he had arranged to give. The ax de- 
scended. The dissevered liead, with the blood 
streaming from it, was held wp by the assistant 
executioner, for the gratification of tlie vast 
crowd which was gazing on the sceiie. He 
said, as he raised it, " Behold the head of a 
traitor ! '' 

The body was placed in a coffin covered with 
black velvet, and taken back through the 
window into the room from which the monarch 
luid walked out, in life and health, but a few 
moments before. A day of two afterward it 
wa3 taken to Windsor Castle upon a hearse 
drawn by six horses, and covered with black 
\tlvet. It was there interred in a vault in the 
chapel, with an inscription upon lead over the 
coffin : 



After the death of Charles, a sort of republic 
was established in England, called tlie Com- 
monwealth, over which, instead of a king, Oli- 
ver Cromwell presided, under the title of Pro- 
tector. The country was, however, in a very 
anomalous and unsettled state. It became 


more distracted still after the death of the Pro- 
tector, and it was only twelve years after be- 
heading the father that the people of England, 
by common consent, called back the son to the 
throne. It seems as if there could be no stable 
government in a country where any very large 
portion of the inhabitants are destitute of prop- 
erty, without the aid of that mysterious but 
all-controlling principle of the human breast, a 
spirit of reverence for the rights, and dread of 
the power of an hereditary crown. In the 
United States almost every man is the pos- 
sessor of property. He has his house, his little 
farm, his shop and implements of labor, or 
something which is his own, and which he feels 
would be jeopardized by revolution and an- 
archy. He dreads a general scramble, knowing 
that he would probably get less than he would 
lose by it. He is willing, therefore, to be gov- 
erned by abstract law. There is no need of 
holding up before him a scepter or a crown to 
induce obedience. He submits without them. 
He votes with the rest, and then abides by the 
decision of the ballot-box. In other countries, 
however, the case is different. If not an actual 
majority, there is at least a very large propor- 
tion of the community who possess nothing. 
They get scanty daily food for hard and long- 
continued daily labor; and as change, no 
matter what, is always a blessing to sufferers. 


or at least is always looked forward to as such, 
they are ready to welcome, at all times, any- 
thing that promises commotion. A war, a con- 
flagration, a riot, or a rebellion, is always wel- 
come. They do not know but that they shall 
gain some advantage by it, and in the mean 
time the excitement of it is some relief to the 
dead and eternal monotony of toil and suf- 

It is true that the revolutions by which mon- 
archies are overturned are not generally ef- 
fected, in the first instance, by this portion of 
the community. The throne is usually over- 
turned at first by a higher class of men ; but 
the deed being done, the inroad upon the es- 
tablished course and order of the social state 
being once made, this lower mass is aroused 
and excited by it, and soon becomes unman- 
ageable. When property is so distributed 
among the population of a state that all have 
an interest in the preservation of order, then, 
and not till then, will it be safe to give to all a 
share in the ^yoiver necessary for preserving it ; 
and, in the mean time, revolutions produced 
by insurrections and violence will probably 
only result in establishing governments un- 
steady and transient just in proportion to the 
suddenness of their origin. 



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ALEXANDER THE GREAT, King of Macedou. B; 
Jacob Abbott. With 61 illustrations. 


PYIITIIIUS, King of Epirus. By Jacob Abbott. With 
45 illustrations. 

HANNIBAL, the Carthaginian. By Jacob Abbott. 
With 37 illustrations. 

JULIUS CAESAR, the Boman Conqueror. By Jiicob 
Abbott. With 44 illustrations. 

ALFRED THE GREAT, of England. By Jacob Abbott. 
With 40 illustrations. 

WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR, of England. I5y Jacob 
Abbott. With 43 illustrations. 

HERNANDO CORTEZ, the Conqueror of Mexico. By 
Jacob Abbott. With 30 illustrations. 

MARY, QUEEN OF SCOTS. By Jacob Abbott. With 
45 illustrations. 

QUEEN ELIZABETH, of England. By Jacob Abbott. 
With 4{) illustrations. 

KING CHARLES THE FIRST, of England. By Jacob 
Abbott. With 41 illustrations. 

Jacob Abbott. With 08 illustratioiLs. 

MARIA ANTOINETTE, Queen of France. By John S. 
C. Abbott. With 42 iUustrations. 

MADAME ROLAND, A Heroine of the French Revolu* 
tion. By Jacob Abbott. With 42 illustrations. 



Young People's Histories. 

By Edward S. Ellis. A.M. 

Cloth, ornamental. .60 cents each. 

STATES. 164 illustrations. Strange adventures and 
marvelous achievement crowd its pages ; and the at- 
tainments shown in the fields of education, of dis- 
covery, of invention, of literature, of art and science 
are wonderful and unprecedented. 

illustrations. The aim of this volume is to enable the 
reader to easily acquire a knowledge of the leading 
facts concerning the stupendous British Empire, whose 
full history, teeming with mighty events and spanning 
twenty centuries, requires volumes for the telling. 

trations. France is a wonderful nation, and her history 
is instructive, for it includes every system of govern- 
ment that the ingenuity of man has devised. It is full 
of warnings, too, and of instructive lessons for American 


illustrations. The record of Germany, now among the 
foremost Powers of the globe, is one of valiant achieve- 
ment on the battlefield, of patient suffering under grind- 
ing tyranny, of grim resolution and heroic endeavor, 
and of grand triimiphs in art, science, literature^ diplo- 



Miscellaneous Works, 

That Went A-Begging. By Ruth" McEnery Stuart. 
Pictures by E. Potthast. Cloth $1 .00. " George Wash- 
ington Jones is as endearing a small specimen of * cul- 
lud* humanity as one has met in fiction for many a 
year, and tlie history of his touching attempt to give 
himself away is told with a mingling of humor and 
pathos that is feirly disarming." — New York Evening 

Pictures by Howard R. Cort. Cloth, 60c. <'The 
talking pony is a character with whom children and 
other people, too, would certainly do well to have a 
listening acquaintance." — The Criterion j New York, 
N. F. 

GYPSY, THE TALKING DOG. By Tudor Jenks. 'Pic- 
tures by Reginald B. Birch. Cloth, 60c. " It is welJ 
to read all that Mr. Jenks tells us about animals that 
talk . " — Pittsburg Ijeader, 

*' After reading this very clever story children will wait 
for remarks from their own pet dogs." — Chicago Post, 

CAPS AND CAPERS. By Gabrielle E. Jackson. Pic- 
tures by C. M. Relyea. Cloth, 60c. *'It is, in a 
modest w^ay, a girl's 'Tom Brown,' written by one 
who knows the heart of a girl, and thoroughly appreci- 
ates it." — The Advance^ Chicago, 


FOLLY IN FAIRYLAND. By Carolyn Wells. Pic- 
tures by Wallace Morgan. Cloth, 60c. " It recounts 
the adventures of a little girl who went to the realm of 
the fairies, but, unlike the immortal Alice, her experi- 
ences were all pleasant. ' ' — Chronicle, San Francisco, CaL 

FOLLY IN THE FOREST. By Carolyn Wells. Pic- 
tures by Beginald B. Birch. Cloth, 60c. ^'In Miss 
Wells' books there is always something going on from 
start to finish, and for this reason they are as interesting 
to young people as any that could be written." — JVdsfif- 
ville American, 

Pictures by Stanley M. Arthurs. Cloth, 60c. ^' Tommy 
is an every-day, honest, wide-awake little fellow, who 
w^ent out into the world by himself and really saw 
things." — Christian Register, Boston, Mass, 

NEER. By Fred A. Ober. Pictures by Reginald B. 
Birch. Cloth, 60c. *' A story comparable in interest 
to Stevenson's * Treasure Island.' "^ — Nashville American. 

Albert Bigelow Paine. Pictures by J. Connacher. 
Cloth, 60 cents. "A pretty, pathetic story of a ^boy 
prodigy of song,' who, left an orphan with his little 
sister, decides to walk to New York and begin his 
studies there. Joe and Little Em are sure to make as 
many warm friends in the telling of this story as they 
made * on the road,' where Joe's wonderful voice won 
all hearts." — Pittsburg Bulletin, 

THE ARKANSAW BEAR. By Albert Bigelow Paine, 
With 35 illustrations by Frank Ver Beck. Cloth, $1.00. 
In this witty and ingenious book a little boy and a big 
black bear become companions in adventures that are 
always diverting, sometimes pathetic, but never tragic 


MARY AUGUSTA'S PRICE. By Sophie Swett. Ooth, 
illustrated, 60 cents. Of course Mary Augusta is tho 
heroine — her name in full was Mary Augusta Wing— 
and her aspirations, struggles, and development into a 
successful business woman are told as only Miss Swett 
can tell them. 

las. Cloth, illustrated, 50 cents. liessie kept house for 
her father and brothers and sistent while her mother 
went on a visit. She had pleaded liard to be allowed to 
do this ; but somehow many things went wrong. What 
those things were and how her experiences became ol 
the greatest value to her, one mus*> read to find out. 

dell. Cloth, illustrated, 60c. '^A mere mention of 
the names of its principal characters should be sufficient 
to recommend -the book to the little folk — as well as to 
many of the grown-ups ^ho still preserve tender recol- 
lections of mamma's stories at sleepy-time." — Ledger 
Monthly, New Yo^k^ 

las Wiggin. Pictures in color by Mills Thompson. 
Cloth, 75 cents. **An animated record of girlish fun 
and frolic, simple, natural and attractive." — Boston 

Jackson. Pictures by C. M. Relyea. Cloth, 60c. 
The heroine is an energetic piece of femininity and 
manages an incapable mother and a fatherless family in 
such a capable way as to obtain the education she covets. 
Eventually she makes doughnuts in the Adirondacks 
to enable her to acquire a diploma in the University of 


DON'TS FOR BOYS. Errors of Conduct Corrected. By 
an Old Boy. Cloth, 50 cents. Ooze calf, gilt top, 
boxed, $1.00. It is a book for <^all sorts and condi- 
tions" of boys, but will be best appreciated by brainy 
young Americans who do not relish long- winded advice, 
but welcome " snappy " paragraphs that appeal to their 
good sense. 

POOR BOYS' CHANCES. By John Habberton, author 
of ''Helen's Babies." Cloth, 136 illustrations, 6o cents. 
"We tried it on the office boy, who is ambitious and 
industrious, and will some day be a great newspaper 
proprietor. When asked what he thought of the book 
he replied : ' Fine.' The book is a great acquisition to 
any boy." — Cincinnati Times-Star, 

SEA KINGS AND NAVAL HEROES. By HartweU Cloth, 137 illustrations, 6o cents. "These 
stories of famous sea fights of the world, with other 
naval adventures and enterprises, are important as a 
branch of education, giving as they do adequate ideas 
of great events and clear conceptions of renowned per- 
sonages. ' ' — Inter- Ocean, 

rew Lang. Pictures by Mills Thompson. Cloth, 50 
cents. It happened long ago, this adventure of the 
Golden Fleece, but the fame of the heroes who sailed 
away to a distant land to win themselves renown for- 
ever has lived, having been told many times in story 
and song. Yet who could tell it like Mr. Lang, with 
his poet's passion for beauty, his artist's eye for color 
and detail? 

tavo Frankenstein. Pictures by Gustavo Verbeek. 
Cloth, 50 cents. 

BUMPER AND BABY JOHN. By Anna Chapin Bay. 
Illustrated. Cloth, 50 cents. 

A GOURD FIDDLE. By Grace MacGowan Cooke. lUus- 
trated. Cloth, 50 cents. 


TRIF AND TRIXY. By John Habberton. Cloth, 50 
cents. A story of a dreadfully delightful little girl and 
her adoring and tormented parents, relatives and 

DON'TS FOR GIRLS. A Manual of Mistakes. By 
Minna Thomas Antrim. Cloth, 50 cents. Ooze calf, 
gilt top, boxed, $1.00. The book is full of wisdom, but 
not of the stereotyped kind, and has walked straight 
into populajity. 



. Good Time Series, 

Attractive books by popular authors, each containing 
qualities which children are quick to perceive and 
appreciate. They strongly appeal to those who judi- 
ciously select what children shall read. Handsomely 
printed, profusely illustrated and attractively bound. 
Cloth, illuminated covers (5^ x 7| inches), 50 cents each. 

UNDER THE STARS. By Florence Morse Kingsley. 
Four beautiful stories from the life of Jesus. "A 
Watch in the Kight." <' The Child in Jerusalem." 
<'The Only Son of His Mother." "The Children's 
Bread." Cloth, 50 cents. 

This story has received nothing but praise from the 
greatest critics ; and it has been illustrated by the best 
artists. Its purpose is to teach kindness to animals. 
Cloth, 60 cents. 

JACKANAPES. By Juliana H. Ewing. In the story of 
"Jackanapes," the Captain's child, is the one impor- 
tant figure. The doting aunt, the faithful Tony, the 
irascible General, the i^ostman, the boy trumpeter, the 
silent Major, and the ever-dear Lollo, are there, it is 
true, but they group around the hero in subordinate 
positions. Cloth, 50 cents. 

ell. This story of the Christmas Stocking has helped 
to make many children happy, for witliout it many 
fathers and mothers would have never thought of 
making arrangements for the visit of Santa Claus, 
Cloth, 50 cents. 


LADDIE. By the Author of " Miss Toosey's Mission." A 
charming story that has been popular many years, and 
deservedly so. Cloth, 50 ceut«. 

MAKING A START. By Tudor Jenks. The story of a 
bright boy who did not wait for '^something to turn 
up," but exercised his talent for drawing until lie 
secured a good position on a great daily newspaper. 
Cloth, 50 cents. 

THE STORY OF A DONKEY. By Mme. La Cointesse 
de SOgur. In this book the donkey tells the story of 
his life and adventure, because, as he says. ''I want 
you to treat all of us donkeys kindly, and to remember 
that Ave are often much more sensible than some 
human beings." Cloth, 50 cents. 

MISS TOOSEY'S MISSION. By the Author of '< Laddie." 
A delightful and wholesome story that has had a wide 
circulation and sti ll holds its popularity. Cloth, 50 cents. 

JESSICA'S FIRST PRAYER. By Ilesba Stretton. A 
beautiful and pathetic story which appeals to all chil- 
dren, and to older readers as well. Cloth, 50 cents. 

A BLUE GRASS BEAUTY. By Gabrielle E. Jackson. 
AVith the story of the '' Blue Grass Beauty " is woven 
that of some very nice peopl ', and all is set forth in 
Mrs. Jackson's inimitable manner. It is far too good a 
book to mislay. Cloth, 50 cents. 

Ewing. JNIany people admire Leonard's story as much 
as 'Jackanapes." It is a simple, exquisitely tender 
little afory. Cloth, 50 cents. 

By Rudolph Erich Raspe. These stories are so out- 
rageous, and INIunchausen asserts so strongly that they 
are all strictly true, that his name has ]>ecome proverbial 
as a synonym for extra v dgant boasting. Cloth, 50 centa. 




A series of j?ood, clean books for yoim^ people, by author? 
whose fame for delightful stories is world-wide. They 
are well i)rinted on fine paper, handsomely illustrated, 
have colored frontispieces, and are bound in cloth deco- 
rated in gold and colors, 50 cents. 

THE HOLLY-TREE. By Charles Dickens. 


A MODERN CINDERELLA. By Louisa M. Alcott. 

THE LITTLE MISSIONARY. By Amanda ]M. Douglas. 

THE RULE OF THREE. By Susan Coolidge, 

CHUGGINS. By H. Irving Hancock. 

WHEN THE BRITISH CAME. By Harriet T. Comstock. 

LITTLE FOXES. By Rose Terry Cooke. 



CSLOVER'S PRINCESS. By Amanda M. Douglas. 




Mother Goose Series. 

a series of entirely new editions of the most popular books 
for young people. Handsomely printed from large, 
clear type, on choice paper; each volume containing 
about Dne hundred illustrations. Half vellum, with 
illuminated sides (6| x8J inches), price, 50 cents each. 















Wee Books for Wee Folks. 

Filled with charming stories, beautifully illustrated with 
pictures in colors and black and white. Daintily, yet 
durably bound. 50 cents each. 








Banbury Cross Series. 

This is a series of old favorites, printed on plate paper ; each 
volume containing about forty beautiful illustrations, 
including a frontispiece in colors. Half vellum, wito 
illuminated sides. Square 16mo. Price, 50 certs eacir. 














This book is due on the last date stamped below, or 

on the date to which renewed. 

1 -month loans may be renewed by calling 642-4209 

Renewals and recharges may be made 4 days prior 

to due date. 



DEC 27 1977 

REC. CI8.0EC 11 77 

LD 2lA-30m-5,'75 

General Library 

University of California 


. VB 36423